Czech Republic (UNMZ)


Last updated on: 2017-09-15
Stakeholder Organization(s) contributing to the case study

National Standards Body

Consumer Organization

International structures for consumer participation

ISO/COPOLCO/WG 3

Consumer representative(s) participating in the international structure(s)

Libor Dupal, Czech Consumer Association (SCS)

National structures for consumer participation (Technical)

TNK 20 Information technology, 1 representative (Czech Consumer Association – SCS)
TNK 21 Electrotechnical terminology, 1 representative (SCS)
TNK 26 Gas, liquid and solid fuels burning appliances, 1 representative (SCS)
TNK 33 Electrical appliances and electrical hand tools, 1 representative (SCS)
TNK 42 Data exchange, 1 representative (SCS)
TNK 67 Light sources, luminaries and related equipment, 1 representative (SCS)
TNK 87 Audio-video technology and eco-design, 1 representative (SCS)
TNK 90 Boilers for central heating, 1 representative (SCS)
TNK 137 Articles for children, 1 representative (SCS)
TNK 142 Explosives and pyrotechnic articles, 1 representative (Cabinet for Standardization)
TNK 144 Nanotechnologies, 1 representative (SCS)
TNK 150 Furniture, 1 representative (SCS)
TNK 151 Food and food products, 1 representative (SCS)
Working Group for CEN/CLC/TC 10 Energy-related products – Material Efficiency Aspects for Ecodesign, 1 representative (SCS)

National structures for consumer participation (Policy)

COMMITTEE, GROUP, PLATFORM - REPRESENTATIVE(s), Position
Council for Standardization; Czech Office for Standards, Metrology and Testing (UNMZ) – Libor Dupal (SCS), Member of the Council
National Council of Quality – Libor Dupal (SCS), Member of the Council; SCS is represented in 3 professional sections of the National Council of Quality: Section for quality in consumer protection, Section for quality infrastructure and Section for quality of the Czech Chamber of Commerce.
Steering Committee (SC) of the National Programme Czech Quality under the National Council of Quality – Libor Dupal (SCS), Chairman of the SC
Coordinative Group for Product Safety at Ministry of Agriculture – Libor Dupal (SCS), Member of the Group
Working Group Foodstuffs and Consumers, Czech Technological Platform for Foodstuffs – Libor Dupal (SCS), Chairman of WG
Accreditation Board, Czech Accreditation Institute – Libor Dupal (SCS), Member of the Board
Committee for Technical Barriers to Trade, under Ministry of Industry and Trade – Libor Dupal (Czech Consumer Association – SCS), Member of the Committee

Platforms for consumer participation

The platform for consumer participation in standardization is the Cabinet for Standardization (Cabinet). Cabinet is a non-profit, public service company established by the Czech Consumer Association with the only mission: to support and implement consumer participation in standardization.
Communication, distribution and collection of information are key factors and conditions of consumer involvement and thus of the Cabinet activities.
The particular membership in technical committees and other bodies and platforms is listed above.
Within last years SCS has signed several important partnership agreements on cooperation in areas of consumers’ affairs. The partners have recognized the Cabinet as a coordination centre for all areas of participation in standardization. These partners are the National Council of the Disabled, the Czech Retirement Association. Additionally the Association of Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises have confirmed the same recognition. This has increased the credibility of the Cabinet which is an important asset for further development of the consumers’ participation in standardization.
Under the Cabinet there is established the Programming/Steering Committee composed of representatives from several consumer associations but also from other crucial stakeholders such as testing laboratories, the accreditation body, the national standardization body, small and medium-sized enterprises and some others.
The Czech Consumer Association/Cabinet for Standardization have developed the Concept for the involvement of Czech Consumers Participation in Standardization 2017-2021.

International cooperation

ANEC – representation in ANEC General Assembly and in ANEC Steering Committee – performed by the Czech Consumer Association
ANEC – Working Groups – participation in 3 WGs (Child safety, Domestic products and ICT services) – ensured by the Czech Consumer Association/Cabinet for Standardization

Consumers' priorities and objectives for participation

The above mentioned Concept includes the National program of priorities for consumer involvement in standardization, which is updated every 1-2 years. See http://www.top-normy.cz/users/files/temata-norm/01-politiky-planovan/Aktual-plan-2016-ad-cj-aj-3.pdf.
It sets down the following technical areas as priorities: Child footwear; Playgrounds; Food quality and safety; Household appliances; Vulnerable consumers; Tourism services; Safety of services.
Visibility (awareness) of standardization is another area where Cabinet in accordance with EU policies develop tools to explain the public the role of standardization for various groups of society (disabled, SME). Our basic priority is to initiate such measures which aim at adopting national concept for involving weaker stakeholders in standardization.
And, SCS/Cabinet try to develop step by step the pool of external experts able to represent consumer interest in National Standardization Committees and other platforms at national and international level.

Main obstacles to participation

Funding

Resources (financial or other)

Language

Funding of participation

The Cabinet for Standardization is a non-profit, public service company established by the Czech Consumer Association with the only mission: to support and implement consumer participation in standardization.
There is no scheme of regular funding and so systematic supporting the work of Cabinet and consumer participation in standardization;
- Very limited funding financial support to participate at international events is a crucial objective;
- Lack of experts to participate and represent consumer interest in Standardization Committees and other platforms at national and international level; it is sure connected with the low budget, but not only (language barrier remains one of the reasons).

Within years it has got financial support from some of EFTA countries, Norway and Switzerland. (The grants were applied by the Czech Consumer Association, but were fully used for the mission of the Cabinet and for activities of Cabinet.)
2008-09 – Norway Grants; 33 000 EUR, development of model for consumer participation (establishment of the Cabinet for Standardization
2010 – Norway Grants; 69 000 EUR, Participation of consumers into implementation of EU regulations in relation to standardization in key areas of consumer affairs, particularly concerning safety of children and other vulnerable consumers
2013-14 – Swiss-Czech Partnership; 40 000 EUR; Consumer participation in the process of standardization – the key to support quality and safety of products and services in crucial areas of consumer interest specifically in respect to safety of children and other vulnerable groups of consumers.
2015-16 - Swiss-Czech Partnership; 51 000 EUR; Consumer participation in the process of standardization – the key to support quality and safety of products and services in crucial areas of consumer interest specifically in respect to safety of children and other vulnerable groups of consumers - Stage II.
Another source to finance activities of the Cabinet comes from the national standardization body (ÚNMZ). The covered activities relate to national coordination of ISO COPOLCO issues and various particular projects related to standardization and increasing awareness of standardization)(support for creating and publishing relevant brochures and leaflets, regular e-newsletter etc.). The total sum of such support differs year for year.

Useful Web sites and other resources for consumer participation

http://www.top-normy.cz/index.php
http://www.top-normy.cz/en/index.php

Respondent's name

Dupal Libor Mr