European harmonised standards are used to provide a presumption of conformity with the relevant EU laws. On 1st Jan 2021, the essential legal requirements that businesses must meet will be the same as they are now. All harmonised standards that give a presumption of conformity to EU law at the end of the transition period will become ‘designated standards’ by the references being published on GOV.UK. Businesses will be able to use designated standards to provide presumption of conformity with GB law.
European harmonised standards will remain the relevant standards for placing goods on the Northern Ireland market where EU rules will continue to apply.
A designated standard is a standard, developed by consensus, which may be recognised by government in part or in full by publishing the reference on GOV.UK. Depending on the product, it can be a standard published by any of the following recognised standardisation bodies:
• British Standards Institution (BSI)
• European Committee for Standardisation (CEN)
• European Committee for Electrotechnical Standardisation (Cenelec)
• European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI)
• International Organization for Standardization (ISO)
• International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC)
• International Telecommunication Union (ITU)
The content of the standard is the responsibility of the recognised standardisation bodies, with BSI as the UK’s National Standards Body representing the interests of UK stakeholders. From 1 January 2021, when deciding if a standard is appropriate for designation, the government will check how far the standard covers the various essential requirements set out in the relevant legislation. The government may decide not to designate or to designate with restriction. Any such restrictions will be described on the GOV.UK pages.
The UK government will, for 28 days, make publicly available a notice of proposal to publish references to standards. Interested parties may object to the publication within the 28-day timeframe. The references to the standards will be published for the purposes of designation of the standards on the 29th day unless the notice is withdrawn or amended before that date.
This link collates existing publications of GB Designated Standards – here (scroll down).