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Croatia – Health and Consumers

Candidate countries conduct negotiations with the European Union (EU) in order to prepare themselves for accession. The accession negotiations cover the adoption and implementation of European legislation (acquis) and, more specifically, the priorities identified jointly by the Commission and the candidate countries in the analytical assessment (or ‘screening’) of the EU’s political and legislative acquis. Each year, the Commission reviews the progress made by candidates and evaluates the efforts required before their accession. This monitoring is the subject of annual reports presented to the Council and the European Parliament.

ACT

Commission Report [COM(2010) 660 final – SEC(2010) 1326 – Not published in the Official Journal].

SUMMARY

The 2010 Report notes significant progress in consumer protection and health. Alignment with the acquis has progressed. Howerver, the administrative resources and capacity for action must be strengthened.

EUROPEAN UNION ACQUIS (according to the Commission's words)

The acquis in this area covers protection of the economic interests of consumers (misleading and comparative advertising, price indication, consumer credit, unfair contract terms, distance and doorstep selling, package travel, timeshare, injunctions for the protection of consumers' interests, certain aspects of the sale of consumer goods and associated guarantees), as well as general product safety (liability for defective products, dangerous imitations and general safety of goods) and distance marketing of consumer financial services. The Member States of the European Union (EU) must effectively enforce the acquis through appropriate judicial and out-of-court dispute resolution mechanisms as well as administrative systems, including market surveillance and an active role for consumer organisations. This chapter also covers certain binding rules with regard to public health.

EVALUATION (according to the Commission's words)

There has been good progress in the area of consumer and health protection. A good level of alignment has been achieved.

Sustained efforts are necessary to strengthen further administrative capacity.

RELATED ACTS

Commission Report [COM(2009) 533 – SEC (2009) 1333 final – Not published in the Official Journal].
The October 2009 Report invited Croatia to strengthen its administrative capacity, particularly in the terms of market surveillance and product checks. Civil society organisations acting on behalf of consumers should have been better supported and citizen access to justice should have been improved.

Commission Report [COM(2008) 674 final – SEC (2008) 2694 - Not published in the Official Journal].
The 2008 November Report presented the good level of alignment of Croatian legislation with the Community acquis in the sector of product safety. However, the country had to improve the implementation of these provisions.

Commission Report [COM(2007) 663 final – SEC (2007) 1431 - Not published in the Official Journal].
The November 2007 Report notes progress. A good level of legal alignment has already been reached between Croatian and Community legislation.

Commission Report [COM(2006) 649 final – SEC (2006) 1385 - Not published in the Official Journal].
The October 2006 Report highlighted the creation of a new department within the Ministry of Economy, Labour and Entrepreneurship responsible for consumer protection and financing consumer information campaigns. However, the directives on product safety, dangerous imitations and administrative cooperation had yet to be transposed. As for measures not related to safety, Croatia still had to come into line with the acquis regarding unfair commercial practices, distance marketing of financial services, injunctions and misleading and comparative advertising.

Commission Report [COM(2005) 561 final – SEC (2005) 1424 - Not published in the Official Journal].
The October 2005 Report stated that there had been no progress in transposing the Community acquis on liability for defective products and product safety. With regard to non-safety-related measures, the main Community legislation to be incorporated was the legislation on injunctions for the protection of consumers' interests, sales and guarantees, and distance marketing of financial services.

Commission Opinion [COM(2004) 257 final - Not published in the Official Journal].
The October 2004 Opinion encouraged Croatia to continue transposing the EU legislation (acquis) on consumer protection, in particular on liability for defective products and on setting up a market surveillance system. With regard to non-safety-related measures, the Opinion recommended that public bodies strengthen consumer organisations and introduce campaigns for the information and education of consumers.

Last updated: 02.12.2010

See also

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