Saudi Arabia to proceed with RoHS conformity assessments despite global objections


Saudi Arabia will not change its plans to require conformity assessments under its RoHS-like regulation, set to come into effect on 4 July, despite governments around the world raising concerns that they have the potential “to create unnecessary obstacles to trade”.

Saudi Arabia said the assessments are needed to “raise the level of quality in the national industry and the safety of imported goods presented in the Saudi market”.

To support its plans, the government published guidelines on the assessment procedure and the documents companies will be required to submit.

The country announced last December that it was postponing the implementation of the technical regulation for six months because of concerns from companies and governments about the timeline.

Conformity assessment

The technical regulation, published on 9 July 2021 by the Standards, Metrology and Quality Organisation (SASO), aligns the country more closely with the EU’s Directive on the restriction of hazardous substances (RoHS) in electrical and electronic equipment (EEE).

However, unlike in the EU, it will require both domestic manufacturers and importers to obtain a certificate – from an approved organisation – that proves the product conforms with the regulation. The United Arab Emirates (UAE)’s RoHS regulation, enacted in 2017, also requires such certificates.

To secure a certificate, suppliers will need to provide a test report for the complete product, according to the guidelines. Alternatively, the supplier can submit a report for at least three critical parts, selected based on a risk assessment.

In other countries with RoHS or RoHS-like legislation, it is usually the manufacturer that prepares technical documents proving a product’s conformity and associated declaration. These documents only need to be disclosed to enforcement authorities upon request.

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Chemical Watch, 27-04-22