When is UKCA marking taking over from CE?


When will UKCA marking take over from CE? With Brexit done the plan was for a new UKCA mark to take over from the current CE mark on all relevant products. This was to be implemented at the end of the transition period. Here will will look into what the UKCA is, how Covid 19 has affected to progress and when it will be introduced.

A number of key questions are:

  • What is UKCA?
  • When was UKCA marking to happen?
  • How has Covid-19 affected implementation?
  • When is UKCA marking likely to happen?
  • How does this impact on PDU Online?

What is UKCA?

The new mark UKCA stands for United Kingdom Conformity Assessed and would replace the CE which meant Conformité Europëene.

Following Brexit it was intended that change from CE to UKCA would be at the end of the transition period i.e. 1st January 2021.

When was UKCA marking to happen?

The massive disruption that has been the global pandemic has meant that readiness plans for changing over have been replaced with more pressing priorities both at governmental and company level.

In a joint letter the two trade associations EAMA [Engineering and Machinery Alliance] and GAMBICA [for Instrumentation, Control, Automation and Laboratory Technology] to the Prime Minister have set out the risk to switching off the CE marking too quickly.

They claim there is insufficient time now for all the necessary work to be completed as industries concentrate on getting their workers off furlough and trying to return to some sort of normality. Notwithstanding the financial burden implementation places upon businesses just at a time when there is so much insecurity and pressure to control costs.

How has Covid-19 affected implementation?

The request from EAMA and GAMBICA is for a 12-18 month extension where CE marking can continue to be accepted in the UK allowing time for industry to adapt to changes, recover from the effects of the pandemic and minimise the risks.

The UK government will also need to create its own directives to mirror those in existence from the European Union that the UKCA mark will signpost to. This in itself will take some time when other priorities are likely to take precedence as the country emerges back to work.

How does this impact on PDU Online?

Currently the UKCA mark technically has no existence and does not point anywhere for compliance purposes. The government withdrew its guidance on the use of the UKCA mark on the 30 January 2020 as it related to how to prepare for a no-deal Brexit. At the time of writing the implementation period still expires at the end of the year.

In the light of the current ambiguity PDU Online will continue to CE mark its products and any action to adopt the new marking is being held in abeyance until further clarity from the government is forthcoming.

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