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Sweden told to comply with EU cosmetics rules

The European Commission has taken further steps against Sweden for infringing EU law on cosmetic products by introducing excessive requirements in the notification of such products.

The Cosmetics Directive establishes rules to be complied with by any cosmetic product made available on the market, in order to ensure the functioning of the internal market and a high level of protection of human health. The directive provides exhaustively for the harmonisation of national rules on the placing on the market of cosmetics including their packaging and labelling. EU Member States may not adopt national rules that exceed these requirements in this respect.

The current Swedish law on cosmetics and hygiene products imposes a number of requirements which go beyond what is required by the Cosmetics Directive, including: notification of products already notified in another Member State; more information than that required by the directive for market surveillance purposes which is limited to the address of the place of manufacture of the cosmetic products, or of their initial importation into the Community. As Sweden has exceeded its obligations under the Cosmetics Directive in a way that hinders the functioning of the internal market, the Commission decided to send a reasoned opinion to ask Sweden to comply with EU law.

The sending of a Reasoned Opinion is the final stage before a case is referred to the European Court of Justice.

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