Croatian MEP Borzan Says End Put to Dual Product Quality

By 17 April 2019

ZAGREB, April 17, 2019 - The European Parliament on Wednesday adopted a law banning products of dual quality, and the Romanian presidency of the Council of the EU had the key role in efforts to put an end to the sale of products of poorer quality in eastern European countries, said a Croatian member of the European Parliament, Social Democrat Biljana Borzan.

The European Parliament adopted by a majority vote the final agreement reached in March by the European Parliament, the European Commission and the European Council to ban products of dual quality in the EU.

"Romania's EU Council Presidency had a crucial role in putting an end to the division between the EU's east and west because it put the item high on the agenda," Borzan, a member of the Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety, and a deputy member of the Committee on Internal Market and Consumer Protection, told Hina.

Borzan said that the new law "primarily protects consumers in eastern countries, however, western consumers are not spared unfair business practices either."

Two years ago, Borzan and the Croatian Food Agency presented results of a product quality survey analysing the quality of the same products sold in Croatia and Germany.

The analysis revealed quality differences in more than half of product samples and that most of the analysed products were more expensive in Croatia.

It has been decided that the existing directive on unfair trading practices would be supplemented with a law banning dual product quality, and producers will be penalised for breaches with up to 4% of their annual sales.

Member-states will have one year from the entry into force of the directive to transpose it into their national law. A safeguard clause has been agreed to ensure that the effects of the directive are analysed in 2022 to determine if it functions in practice, Borzan said.

"If producers come up with innovative ways to bypass the law, we will have the opportunity to make the law more strict," said Borzan.

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