Cuffe Welcomes Consumer Right to Repair


MEPs also approve new Ecodesign Regulation & forced labour products ban

Consumers will benefit from longer-lasting, higher quality, and more eco-friendly products under new Right to Repair and Ecodesign laws approved in Strasbourg today. The laws were adopted by a majority of 584 MEPs and 455 MEPS, respectively. Dublin MEP Ciarán Cuffe welcomed the strong result, which will bring significant savings for consumers. The European Commission estimates that consumers lose almost €12 billion per year by choosing to replace goods that may have been repaired. 

Ciarán Cuffe MEP said:

“The EU market has been increasingly flooded with poor-quality products that break easily over the last number of years. This new Right to Repair law stops throwaway culture in its tracks. It’s a crucial step towards creating a circular economy that will save people a lot of money, and save billions in energy and raw materials.
“The ban on the destruction of unsold goods like clothes and footwear with the Ecodesign Regulation cannot come soon enough. It’s high time to put fast fashion out of fashion, and encourage a shift to higher quality, sustainable fabrics. I’m encouraged by the growth in online marketplaces for second-hand clothing like Depop and Vinted, and I think these can be further promoted. We can also offer more support to Irish designers who are producing sustainable clothing.” 

The Right to Repair law introduces an enhanced obligation for manufacturers to repair their products within a certain period of time, to provide affordable replacement parts, and to extend the guarantee period by one year when consumers choose to repair an item. Any registered repair services can be engaged by consumers, and not only the original manufacturer or their products. The Ecodesign Regulation introduces new minimum standards for products like clothes, furniture, and appliances, with an emphasis on making products that last longer and can be more easily recycled. It includes a ban on the destruction of unsold clothes and footwear which will apply in two years, with additional bans to follow.  

MEPs also approved a law prohibiting the sale of products made with forced labour in the EU by a majority of 555 MEPs in favour and 6 against, with 45 abstentions. The new EU Forced Labour Regulation prohibits products with links to forced labour from entering the EU market, and establishes a mechanism to address cases of state-imposed forced labour.  

On the Forced Labour Regulation, Cuffe said: 

“This is a significant victory in the fight against the exploitation of workers. The EU is using its market power for good, fighting back against the continuing scourge of forced labour around the world. Too often, the solar panels on our roofs or the clothes that we wear have been made by using forced labour. This is good news for workers, good news for consumers, and also good news for businesses suffering from import dumping from regions abroad using forced labour.”

April 23, 2024

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