Construction Products Regulations (Revised Guidance)
After pan-industry pressure and ever-declining economic prospects, Business Secretary Grant Shapps has announced a further delay to the guidance concerning the use of UK Conformity Assessed (UKCA) construction products, which will replace the CE mark.
To recap, when evaluating framework tenders, LHC includes sections in the specifications covering Construction Products Regulation compliance. Over the past few years we have set out our approach so preparations could be made in good time, as encouraged by the UK Government.
Under European directives all construction products placed on the EU market that are covered by European Harmonised Standards are required to be CE marked. When UK left the EU, the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS) published new guidance on the use of the new UK Conformity Assessed (UKCA) mark to replace the European CE mark in the UK (except Northern Ireland).
The guidance published on 1st September 2020 and updated on 24 August 2021 has again been updated by the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS) to set out the new date by which all construction products placed on the market must be covered by the UKCA mark.
Briefly, all existing harmonised European Standards (the definition of CE Marking applicability) have now become identical UK ‘designated standards’ and companies are able to apply to the UKAS certified 'UK approved bodies' (formerly 'UK notified bodies') for certification and the UKCA mark.
UK approved bodies are now listed on the UK Market Conformity Assessment Bodies (UKMCAB) database, and have a 4-digit approved body number, which is the same as their previous notified body number. Additionally, UK technical assessment bodies, which are also listed on the UKMCAB database, are now be able to carry out the technical assessment of construction products for the GB market. The products may then be affixed with the UKCA marking.
Although it has been possible to use the UKCA mark from 1 January 2021 in the UK (not including Northern Ireland), to allow businesses further time to adjust to the new requirements, the existing CE marking can now be used until 31 December 2024 in most cases.
Therefore, continuing to be as flexible as possible, LHC will accept certification using both CE and UKCA marking regimes until 31 December 2024.
However, we encourage all Appointed Companies and tenderers to ensure they can comply with the UKCA marking requirements as soon as possible by reading the guidance and making suitable arrangements for the switchover well before the 31 December 2024 deadline.