The European Commission’s “’Blue Guide’ on the Implementation of EU products rules” (the Blue Guide) was last issued in 2016, and is now becoming out of date on a number of topics. In late 2019 the Commission announced its intention to prepare an updated version of the Blue Guide which, among other things, is intended to incorporate new EU legislation.

This update is currently in progress, with draft revisions identifying a number of areas of change, including:

  • aspects of the circular economy such as the remanufacturing and treatment of used goods;
  • a more accurate reflection of issues arising in the digital age and under a circular economy;
  • certain legal implications of Brexit;
  • coherence with the EU’s ongoing enhancement of its market surveillance and enforcement regime; and
  • a handful of clarificatory amendments, for example, around the position of “end-users” and “own use” of products.

Revisions to the Blue Guide are nearing completion, with the majority of edits made and the Commission due to publish the new guide in mid-2021.

A more detailed look at the key changes as we see them (based on the latest draft text), is available here.