CE Marking - Don't Get Confused With Chinese Exports

CE Marking - Don't Get Confused With Chinese Exports

04th March 2015

We recently published a blog post all about CE Marking, explaining what it is and what a manufacturer needs to do in order to get accredited so that the mark can be added to the products being manufactured.  Here at Safety Fabrications, we’re rather proud of our CE accreditation – the CE Mark became mandatory for construction products in July, 2014.

However, we do understand that some people can get confused about CE Marks, and it’s easy to see why.  The letters “CE” stand for Conformite Europeene (European Conformity) but there’s been some confusion arising from the fact that CE also stands for Chinese Export.  If you look at the two logos, you can see just how similar they are which makes it easy to understand where the confusion stems from.  This image shows the difference quite clearly, but we can see that unless you have both logos side by side, it would be very easy to get them muddled.

This state of affairs has caused so much confusion that it’s actually been raised at the European Parliament.  The European Commission revealed that it was unaware of the existence of the Chinese Export mark and that “the incorrect application of the CE Marking on products was unrelated to incorrect depictions of the symbol”. 

There have been reports that some Chinese manufacturers were submitting well engineered electrical products in order to obtain conformity testing reports, but then removing non-essential components in the productions stage to reduce costs.  27 electrical chargers underwent testing and it was discovered that those with reputable names met safety standards, while unbranded models were non-compliant. 

There are many who believe that the similarity of the Chinese Export mark is not a coincidence but rather an aggressive approach by some manufacturers to sell into the European market without the right standards.  Whether or not that is true is something we don’t feel qualified to comment on and would urge anybody buying equipment that should legally bear the CE Mark to take a close look at both images and take note that both the C and the E are parts of a full circle and spaced accordingly.  A good rule of thumb would be to question any logo where the two letters are closer together.

Resellers have a legal responsibility to make sure that the goods they sell are marked legally as the penalty for the supply of non-compliant goods is imprisonment and/or fine.  The regulations mean that the authorities have the power to enter premises, test products and seize records and products.  Manufacturers can also be legally made to recall or replace faulty products.

Consumers who are worried about the authenticity of the CE Mark on goods should check the product, the manual or ask the supplier for documentation.  If the logo cannot be found or the supplier cannot produce a CE Certificate, then the goods may not be compliant.

Here at Safety Fabrications we have the necessary accreditation so all of our products carry the correct CE Mark – this means that all of our customers can rest assured that the products they buy from us are legally compliant and fit for purpose.