The European Commission welcomes today's European Parliament vote in favour of new rules to improve the safety of consumer products circulating in the EU's internal market - including those imported from outside the EU - and to step-up market surveillance concerning all non-food products. This will contribute to strengthening consumer protection. It will also create a level playing field for business by ensuring that responsible manufacturers do not suffer unfair competition from products which do not comply with European safety or environmental rules.

Public perception of product safety worsened slightly between 2011 and 2012. According to the 2012 survey data, over a quarter of consumers (27 %) and almost a fifth of retailers (19 %) think that a significant number of non-food products on the market are unsafe, which is an increase of 2 percentage points compared to 2011 among both respondent groups.

A revised GPSD (2001/95/EC) is applicable as from 15 January 2004. The objectives of the Directive are both to protect consumer health and safety and to ensure the proper functioning of the internal market.