The British Approvals Service for Cables (BASEC), the international leader in test and certification services for energy, data and signal cables and ancillary products, will be advising cable manufacturers and distributors exporting construction cable into the EU about the imminent Construction Products Regulation (CPR) for cables deadline, at this year’s Middle East Electricity Exhibition (MEEE).
The CPR regulation demands that cable manufacturers in the Middle East supplying any type of cable that is intended to fit permanently into the structure of a building (including power distribution, final circuit wiring, control and instrumentation and data communications cables) to European markets, meets the new cable testing, certification and CE marking requirements of CPR by 1st July 2017. Cable wholesalers and distributors supplying into the EU also have a responsibility to ensure the cable manufacturers they work with have done this, or if necessary to undertake the CE marking requirements themselves.
BASEC has been designated by the UK Government Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) as a Notified Body, number 2661, for conducting cable testing to the Construction Products Regulation (CPR) and a Notified Body for cable product certification to the CPR. BASEC is among the first to be appointed across Europe and one of few to have scope for both activities.
Since CPR for cables launched last year, BASEC has experienced an increased demand from Middle East based cable manufacturers seeking to conform to the new regulations.
“Our message is simply don’t leave it too late,” warned Dr Jeremy Hodge, chief executive at BASEC. “The regulation becomes mandatory in a few months and while lower class requirements can be handled quickly, higher classes are more complicated to test and therefore, the Notified Body will need more time to perform assessments. Cable that does not comply within this time frame may need to be taken off the market.”
Manufacturers should also be aware that CPR is a regulatory system and will need to be implemented separately from any voluntary cable product approvals or testing,” he said.
The benefits of achieving compliance with CPR for cables include free circulation of construction cable in the EU’s single market and cable products only need to be assessed once, according to a harmonized European standard, EN 50575. Users of construction cable can also better define their performance requirements and market surveillance is coordinated through one common information structure. About 4 million tons of low voltage cable is used in Europe each year, much of this in construction, amounting to a value of about 12 billion Euros.
“We look forward to discussing these matters with delegates at the exhibition, in fact, end users and specifiers in the Middle East may find the classification system useful for their own local applications,” continued Dr Hodge.
In the United Arab Emirates, BASEC holds pre-qualification status as an independent testing laboratory for low voltage cables by the Abu Dhabi Water and Electricity Authority (ADWEA) and for more than a decade, BASEC representatives have been working in the Middle East serving reputable cable manufacturers who hold BASEC certification for their products. BASEC continues to develop strong links with key local regulators, utilities and industry groups who seek to drive forward quality, service, and safety standards in this globally connected region.