Fabian Demicoli

Rapid Alert System for Reporting Dangerous Products in the EU

The RAPEX system is the EU's rapid alert system for dangerous consumer products. However, food, pharmaceutical and medical devices are not monitored under this system. The information received by the Commission is disseminated to all the other National Contact Points. RAPEX thereby supports the Commission's ongoing EU Consumer Policy Strategy 2007 – 2013. One of the main goals of the strategy is to boost consumer confidence in the internal market. On a weekly basis overviews about unsafe products and the measures taken to eliminate the risks are posted on the internet.

 

During the last two years Malta had reported 31 products to the RAPEX system. These were detected by market surveillance officials. The products were present on the Maltese market and posed a serious risk to the health and safety of consumers. Last April, EU Commissioner for Health and Consumer Policy John Dalli, had stated that, throughout Europe, the trend of notifying dangerous products rose significantly, by 7%, compared to the previous year. Identified products are usually withdrawn from the market or recalled from consumers. Warnings are also issued. Economic operators face the costs incurred following recall of a product as well as loss of reputation, when proper risk management and risk monitoring could have prevented the situation from occurring. Closer scrutiny and testing, and the necessary safety information must be passed along to the consumers.

The National Contact Point in Malta is: Malta Standards Authority – Mr Michael Cassar / Ms Shirley Mifsud Tel. +356 23952000 The latest notifications can be viewed on: http://ec.europa.eu/consumers/dyna/rapex/rapex_archives_en.cfm

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