Outside but aligned – CE marking to remain indefinitely recognised in the UK

As previously announced, the UK government has enacted legislation to continue the recognition of the CE marking indefinitely for a range of products falling within the scope of 21 regulations, including toys, radio equipment, machinery and others. The Product Safety and Metrology etc. (Amendment) Regulations 2024 (the “Regulations”) were made on 23 May 2024 and come into force on 1 October 2024. This is a good news for businesses that will continue to have the flexibility to use either the UKCA or CE marking when placing their products on the market in Great Britain.


As a result of Brexit, at the end of the UK-EU transition period on 31 December 2020, the UK government introduced the UK conformity assessment regime and the UKCA (UK Conformity Assessed) marking for products to be placed on the market in Great Britain (“GB”). At that time, the intention was to replace the CE marking  regime applicable in the EU with the UKCA marking, its GB equivalent. In order to allow businesses time to adjust, the government also introduced a transition period during which CE-marked goods that met EU product safety requirements would be able to continue to be placed on the GB market. That transition period, which had already been extended, was due to expire on 31 December 2024.

Recent developments

As a result of feedback from the industry, in August 2023 the government announced an indefinite extension to the use of CE marking on the GB market, beyond 31 December 2024. The Regulations now officially give effect to that announcement, removing the previous expiry date of end of 2024 for recognising the CE marking. This change will be welcomed by businesses placing in-scope products on the GB market that will now continue to have the choice to use either the CE marking or the UKCA marking.

Products in scope

The Regulations will apply to products falling within the scope of 21 regulations, including toys, radio equipment, machinery, ecodesign, and restriction of hazardous substances in electrical equipment. However, they do not apply to medical devices, construction products, marine equipment, rail products, cableways, transportable pressure equipment and unmanned aircraft systems where sector-specific arrangements apply.

“Fast-track” UKCA process

The Regulations also introduce a so called “fast-track” UKCA process. The process, which is not mandatory, means that where a manufacturer ensures that: (i) the EU Essential Requirements are met and (ii) the relevant EU conformity assessment procedures have been carried out, then the corresponding UKCA requirements (i.e. GB essential requirements and GB Conformity assessment procedures) are treated as being satisfied. This also means that where products fall within multiple regulations, a mixture of both UK and EU conformity assessment procedures can be used to demonstrate compliance with UK requirements, and the UKCA marking can be affixed.

Government guidance notes that businesses who follow European harmonised standards to demonstrate their products meet the EU essential requirements and place their products on the GB market must note that where both EU harmonised standards and UK designated standards remain aligned, they may still rely on the harmonised standard to demonstrate they have met the relevant EU essential requirements to place a product on the GB market. However, where there is a difference between designated standards and European harmonised standards, the conformity assessment procedures that need to be complied with before the CE marked product can be placed on the GB market, may be affected.

This means that businesses must pay close attention to their conformity assessment processes. If a GB designated standard has a restriction which the equivalent European harmonised standard used does not, additional steps may be required in order to bring that product into compliance with the safety requirements before placing the product on the GB market. In general, however, where applicable goods meet EU requirements, including the applicable conformity assessment procedures, they can continue to be placed on the GB market indefinitely.

More changes on the horizon?

In addition to the indefinite recognition of the CE marking, the UK government has also announced that it intends to bring forward additional legislation later in 2024 to provide for permanent labelling flexibility. According to the announcement, this legislation will apply to (i) the UKCA marking, (ii) manufacturer contact details labelling and (iii) importer contact details labelling, meaning that businesses will be able to choose to apply the required marking or labelling:

  • directly on the product;

  • on a sticky label, accompanying document or packaging; or

  • voluntarily via digital labelling (once legislation is passed, businesses may also be able to provide the declaration of conformity digitally).


The indefinite recognition of the CE marking is undoubtedly good news for businesses as it provides continuity and flexibility, allowing them to choose the most suitable marking for their products.  According to the UK government, new labelling measures on the horizon will not only benefit businesses with reduced costs and flexibility, but also ensure the UK regulatory system is agile and in pace with the “modern and digital world of business and international trade”. Additional details for these measures will be provided by the UK government in due course, including which regulations the measures will apply to.

Hogan Lovells is actively monitoring developments in this space – keep an eye out for our future updates.



Authored by Valerie Kenyon, Magdalena Bakowska, and Lorena Baltazar.

Valerie Kenyon
Magdalena Bakowska
Senior Associate
Lorena Baltazar


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