Emirates Authority for Standardization & Metrology approves new mandatory standards for toys

Abu Dhabi: Emirates Authority for Standardization & Metrology (ESMA) announced today that updated standards on children’s toys will be submitted to the Federal Cabinet, which will issue a regulatory resolution to approve implementation of the GCC mandatory technical regulations and guides for these products in the UAE.

ESMA affirmed that it is implementing an integrated strategy to improve specifications and quality of national and imported children products to protect safety and health of children and support national economy through compliance with UAE, Gulf and international certified safety standards and requirements.

Acting Director of ESMA Abdullah Al Maeeni said the new Conformity Assessment Regulation for Children’s Toys, endorsed by ESMA board, would develop mechanisms of monitoring children products on the local market so as to ensure maximum levels of children’s safety and health.

The prime goal, he added, is to make sure that children face no harm and risks when using these products.

All toys sold in the United Arab Emirates and the Gulf countries need to meet the requirements set by the GCC Standardization Organization (GSO).Toys authorised by ESMA currently have the G-mark certificate (Gulf Conformity Mark), which testifies compliance with GCC-wide safety and health regulations for toys.

The GCC regulation has been issued in execution of the goals of the Gulf Cooperation Council to realize the integration and connection between the member countries in all fields and support their unity, and according to the goals of the “economical agreement” between the Council countries, which established the basis of the common market for the GCC countries, to develop the common work method between the Council countries, and whereas a unified conformity marking shall be used to facilitate the control process of the common market for the GCC countries by the competent authorities of the member countries, and to clarify the commitments of the manufacturers and importers in regards to the mark by virtue of the applied systems. This regulation lays down the form, the process and the meaning of affixing the marking as well as the declaration of conformity.

The purpose of the GCC Regulation is ensuring a high level of protection of the health and safety of consumers and to establish a legislative framework for any product placed on the market, or supplied or made available or intended for consumers, or likely to be used by consumers under reasonably foreseeable conditions even if not intended for them, and also to ensure the safety of local or imported products placed on internal markets of the Member States.

He added that ESMA is conducting regular meetings with market regulators, suppliers, vendors and manufacturers to enlighten them on the regulations and requirements that toys should meet under the GCC technical safety and health regulations.

He put the value of the UAE toys market at AED 1.8 billion a year with an annual average spending of a child at AED 1300.