Marine Equipment Directive: Market Surveillance discussions

In November 2021, ADCO MED (Administrative Coordination of Market Surveillance for the Marine Equipment Directive) published an information document on Directive 2019/90/EU, the EU directive for Marine Equipment.

The document collects answers on various topics discussed by the Member States market surveillance authorities and the European Commission, presented in selected meetings between 2015 and 2021.

Storage period of technical documentation

On October 6 and 7, 2015, the discussion concerned the storage period for technical documentation. Both the old and the new Marine Equipment Directive oblige manufacturers to store the technical documentation for at least 10 years after the wheel mark has been affixed on the last product manufactured. Moreover, the new directive (MED) specifies that this should not be done for a period shorter than the expected life of the equipment concerned.

Authorised Representative of non-EU manufacturers

On June 6, 2016, and on June 3, 2021, the topic of discussion concerned whether the authorised representative required by the directive for non-EU manufacturers must be designated within the EU. The Commission referred to the “Blue Guide” on the implementation of EU product rules, explaining that the manufacturer, whether established in the EU or not, can appoint an authorized representative in the EU on his behalf. Nonetheless, Article 2 of the new MED specifies that the authorised representative is a natural or legal person within the European Union.

It is important to note that based on Protocol 1 Section 7, and Annex II Chapter XXXII point 2 of the EEA Agreement, an authorised representative of an overseas manufacturer can also be established in an EEA EFTA State (Norway Iceland and Liechtenstein), and a manufacturer established in an EEA EFTA State does not need to nominate an authorised representative in the EU. In addition, authorised representatives established in Switzerland are not acceptable under Article 13 of the Directive.

Format of date and reports of non-compliant products

On October 6, 2016, the topic of discussion was the format of the date following the wheel mark. The coordination group agreed on the interpretation laid down in a directive recommendation, which points out that “the marking of the year in which the wheel mark is affixed is acceptable in either two digit or four digit format, according to the manufacturer’s preference and existing practice”.

Eventually, the last update from June 3, 2021, concerns the reports of non-compliant products by manufacturers. It was agreed that producers and distributors, or their authorized representative, may use the Business Alert Gateway to report problems of their products to the Member State authorities. This facilitates the data collection by authorities which can then properly assess whether this should lead to a notification in Safety Gate/RAPEX.

Are you a marine equipment manufacturer? Obelis can serve as your Authorized Representative based in the heart of Europe – Brussels, Belgium!

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Federica Russo

Regulatory Affairs Department



Directive 2014/90/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council on Marine Equipment. OJ L 257/146, 23 July 2014 EUR-Lex – 32014L0090 – EN – EUR-Lex (

ADCO MED Information for Economic Operators retrieved on 17/02/2022 from

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