Today, the European Parliament's Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection (IMCO) has signed off on its initial recommendations to make consumer goods in the EU more sustainable and durable. These recommendations were then granted by the Parliament and include the following key aspects:
Guarantee: Future legislation should ensure that consumers receive legal guarantees regarding a product's lifespan, while manufacturers should be directly liable for any potential product defects.
Product information and durability: Prior to purchase, manufacturers should be required to provide consumers with information about the product's lifespan and manufacturers should also tackle the issue of premature obsolescence. With this, consumers could make better informed purchase decisions and avoid potential problems later on.
Right to repair: Consumers should benefit from a 'right to repair' – this would make product repairs both cheaper and easier. At the moment, the availability and/or cost of repairs remains a major obstacle for consumers, which in the end often leads consumers to buy an entirely new product, even though in many cases a simple repair would do.
Next, the task of the European Commission is to come up with a suitable legislative proposal.