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Council Approves Right-to-Repair Directive to Boost Circular Economy and Consumer Repair Options

Council Approves Right-to-Repair Directive to Boost Circular Economy and Consumer Repair Options

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The Council has adopted a directive promoting the repair of broken or defective goods, also known as the right-to-repair (or R2R) directive. This legislation will make it easier for consumers to seek repair instead of replacement and repair services will become more accessible, transparent and attractive. The adoption of the directive is the last step in the legislative decision-making process.

The directive adopted today enshrines a new right for consumers: the right to have defective products repaired in an easier, cheaper and faster way. It also gives manufacturers the incentive to make products that last longer and can be repaired, reused and recycled. And finally, it makes repairing a more attractive economic activity that can create Europe-based quality jobs. All economic actors win, and so does the environment.

Alexia Bertrand, Belgian State Secretary for the Budget and Consumer Protection

Repair made easier

The directive adopted creates a set of tools and incentives to make repair more attractive for consumers. These include requiring manufacturers to repair products which are technically repairable under EU law; the availability of a voluntary repair form with clear information about the repair process (deadlines, prices, etc.); a European online platform where consumers can easily find repair services and the extension of the legal guarantee with 12 months if consumers choose repair instead of replacement.

The list of repairable products can be increased in the future: whenever the Commission introduces new reparability requirements for certain products, these will be added to the R2R directive.

Following the Council’s approval today, the legislative act has been adopted. After being signed by the President of the European Parliament and the President of the Council, the directive will be published in the Official Journal of the European Union and will enter into force on the 20th day following its publication. Member states will have 24 months from the entry into force to transpose the directive into national law.

Related Article: Council Adopts Net-Zero Industry Act to Strengthen EU’s Green Technology Manufacturing

This proposal was presented by the Commission on 22 March 2023 and forms part of the New Consumer Agenda and the Circular Economy Action Plan. It complements other recent EU legislation to promote sustainable consumption, such as the ecodesign for sustainable products regulation (which will promote the production of repairable products) and the directive on empowering consumers for the green transition (which will enable consumers to make better-informed purchasing decisions at the point of sale).

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