Sinn Féin MEP calls for uniform phone chargers
Sinn Féin MEP Matt Carthy has called on the EU Commission to stop dragging its feet and to implement rules to force phone manufacturers to make all phones in the EU chargeable with a common charger.
The issue will be debated next week in Strasbourg with MEP expected to call on the European Commission to adopt rules forcing companies to make all phones compatible with a common charger.
MEP Carthy said:
“I am calling on the new European Commission to show they have consumers’ interest at heart by stopping the foot-dragging and to act to enforce a common charger.
“Most companies already apply common standards with the exception of Apple. It is not in the interest of consumers that one brand requires specific chargers to be charged.
“It is believed the Commission is reluctant to stand up to Apple given the trade tension between the USA and Europe but consumer rights, (and particularly the rights of parents suffering daily battles over chargers!) must triumph here.
“The new rules would also mean less electronic waste when taken alongside the proposal to allow chargers to be sold separately.
“I am adding my voice to the call or a common charger to be made the law as soon as possible.”
- The Radio Equipment Directive was adopted in 2014 and gives the opportunity to the Commission to introduce, through a delegated act, a requirement to produce common chargers. This would mean that any mobile phone on the European market would be charged with the same charger. The Commission reportedly examining possibilities to adopt such delegated act.
- Many producers already participate in a voluntary scheme, only 18% of the market is not harmonised at present. This 18% is the exact market share of Apple. Apple has been actively lobbying against a delegated act to introduce a mandatory common charger.
- An impact assessment is ongoing and the results should be presented by the Commission in the coming months.
- This Oral question and Commission statement will be used to pressure the Commission to introduce the common charger as this is better for consumers. In combination with new rules on decoupling (not automatically receiving a new charger with every newly bought phone), the common charger could also greatly decrease the amount of electronic waste.
- A European Parliament resolution will be drafted for later in January.