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DECEMBER 2014

16 December 2014 - Draft Maltese Standard for Public Comment

The Standard and Metrology Institute of MCCAA has made available to the public a Draft Maltese Standard DSM 5200:2014 "Photo-voltaic Installations - General Safety requirements of PV panel installations". The draft standard is available for download from HERE.

Comments are welcome up to 16th February 2015. These can be sent to Head of Standardization on standards@mccaa.org.mt and will be considered by the Technical Committee before finalizing the Standard. The Draft Standard may be modified before being issued as a Maltese Standard.

 


5 December 2014 - Draft Maltese Standard for Public Comment

The Standard and Metrology Institute of MCCAA has made available to the public a Draft Maltese Standard DSM 3800:2014 "Accessibility for all in the Built Environment". The draft standard is available for download from HERE.

Comments are welcome up to 6th February 2015. These can be sent to Head of Standardization on standards@mccaa.org.mt and will be considered by the Technical Committee before finalizing the Standard. The Draft Standard may be modified before being issued as a Maltese Standard.

 

NOVEMBER 2014

18 November 2014 - All ISO standards now available from our MCCAA Website.

Now you can buy all ISO standards, graphical symbols, publications and online subscription products directly from our MCCAA Website, via the new Online Browsing Platform, which incorporates the latest technology for consulting and working with standards.

On our new Web Store, you will have access to:

  • The complete catalogue of ISO standards and graphical symbols in every available format;   
  • Sector-specific subscriptions to  online collections of ISO standards;
  • All ISO handbooks dedicated to SMEs and checklists on the most relevant topics, including ISO 9001 or ISO 14001.

Among its many new features, the new Web Store lets you:

  • Select between a monthly or yearly subscription to your online collection for added flexibility;
  • Choose a multi-user license options for the Online collection of standards, which gives you up to 5 or 10 additional licenses to share with the persons of your choice;
  • Preview the content before buying to see whether a standard or symbol fits your needs;
  • Download your purchased standards (in PDF) and symbols at any time, directly from your own personal account;

  • Follow as many standards as you like, receiving e-mail updates of any modifications to the content

Enjoy the flexibility of ISO’s latest product offering and take advantage of all the possibilities this new Web Store has to offer. Don’t delay. Visit our new ISO Webstore

 

OCTOBER 2014

3 October 2014 -  MCCAA Call for Applications

Position of Information Officer

Closing date: Wednesday 15 October 2014 at noon

 

 

SEPTEMBER 2014

23 September 2014 - Draft Maltese Standard for Public Comment

The Standards and Metrology Institute of MCC has made available to the public a draft Maltese standard DSM 5100:2014 "Photo-voltaic Installations - Requirements for electrical safety for single phase systems". The draft standard is available for download from HERE.

Comments are welcome up to 28th November 2014. These can be sent to Head of Standardization and will be considered by the Technical Committee before finalizing the Standard. The Draft Standard may be modified before being issued as a Maltese Standard.

 

 

AUGUST 2014

26 August 2014 - Draft Maltese Standard for Public Comment

The Standards and Metrology Institute of MCCAA has made available to the public a draft Maltese standard DSM 3600:2013 "Cash and Valuables - In Transit Services - minimum requirements". The draft standard is available for download from HERE.

Comments are welcome up to 31st October 2014. These can be sent to Head of Standardization and will be considered by the Technical Committee before finalizing the Standard. The Draft Standard may be modified before being issued as a Maltese Standard.

 

 

24 August 2014 - MCCAA Call for Applications for Legal Officers and Economic Officers

Position of Legal Officers

Position of Economic Officers in the Office for Consumer Affairs

Position of Economic Officers in the Office for Competition

 

Closing date: Friday, 5th September 2014 noon

Late applications will not be considered

Further information on the above posts is available from the Office of the Chairman, Malta Competition and Consumer Affairs Authority, Mizzi House, National Road, Blata-l-Bajda HMR9010. Applicants are to submit their letter of application, a copy of their curriculum vitae and a scanned copy of their certificates.  Applications may also be sent by email to marcelle.carabott@mccaa.org.mt by the closing date mentioned above.

 

17 August 2014 - MCCAA Call for Applications  

The Malta Competition and Consumer Affairs Authority (MCCAA) is accepting applications for the posts of two (2) Directors within the Office for Competition.   We are looking for professionals qualified in the domain of competition law and/or industrial organization economics who are dynamic, proactive and committed and are able to lead a team of professionals made up mainly of lawyers and economists.

Position of Director (Communication, Energy, Transport and Financial Services Markets) in the Office for Competition.

Position of Director (Primary, Manufacturing and Retail Markets) in the Office for Competition.

 

Closing date: Wednesday, 27th August 2014 noon.

Late applications will not be considered.

Further information on the above posts is available from the Office of the Chairman, Malta Competition and Consumer Affairs Authority, Mizzi House, National Road, Blata-l-Bajda HMR9010. Applicants are to submit their letter of application, a copy of their curriculum vitae and a scanned copy of their certificates.  Applications may also be sent by email to marcelle.carabott@mccaa.org.mt by the closing date mentioned above.

ETC Permits:       140/2014                                                                             

                          141/2014

 

 

JUNE 2014

12 June 2014 - CEN and CENELEC highlight role of age-friendly standards in enabling growth of the 'silver economy'

The European Standardization Organizations are ready to work with business and other stakeholders, including groups representing older citizens and consumers, to develop age-friendly standards that will meet the needs of an ageing population and support the growth of the silver economy in Europe. This is the main conclusion to be drawn from the discussions that took place at the 3rd European Standardization Summit in Istanbul (Turkey) on 11 June 2014.

'How standardization can support the silver economy' was the main theme of the Summit, which was organized by CEN and CENELEC (two of the European Standardization Organizations) together with TSE (the Turkish Standards Institution). The event was attended by more than 200 delegates, including leaders from national, European and international standardization organizations, as well as representatives of the Turkish Government, the European Commission and other stakeholders.

Europe is experiencing a significant demographic shift, as millions of people who were born during the so-called 'baby boom' (post-1945) are getting older. Average life expectancy is also increasing thanks to advances in healthcare provision and medical science. The result of these changes is that the number of people over 65 years of age is due to double during the next 50 years. Indeed, in the year 2025 it is expected that older citizens (over 65 years) will represent at least 20% of the population in most European countries.

The concept of the 'silver economy' refers to a wide range of activities that meet the needs of older citizens and customers. It encompasses housing and the environment, health and safety, transportation, information and communication technologies (ICT), diverse leisure activities, and various kinds of services such as home care services, etc.

The European Standardization Summit in Istanbul was opened by Hulusi Sentürk, President of the Turkish Standards Institution (TSE). The theme of the silver economy was introduced by Ebbe Johansen, Vice-President of AGE Platform Europe, which represents the concerns and interests of older citizens towards the European institutions.

The European Commission Vice-President Neelie Kroes addressed the Summit by means of a specially-recorded video message. She highlighted healthcare as an area where standards can contribute to improving the lives of older citizens. She also underlined the economic benefits that Europe can gain from tapping into the global silver economy, which is worth around €3 trillion annually. According to Vice-President Kroes: "Silver is the new gold!"

The programme of the Summit included parallel sessions where specific areas were analysed and discussed in depth. Topics addressed included: 'Standardization in relation to healthcare services'; 'Age-friendly cities, homes and environments'; 'Skills for the silver economy'; and 'Technology & innovation for independent living and active ageing'.

Delegates learned about various standardization activities that are already being developed by CEN and CENELEC in cooperation with relevant stakeholders, notably in relation to 'Design For All' and 'Accessibility in the Built Environment', as well as so-called Smart Homes ('Home and Building Electronic Systems'). CEN and CENELEC are also collaborating with ETSI on standards for the accessibility of products and services in the ICT domain as well as in relation to 'Smart and Sustainable Cities and Communities'.

The conclusions of the Summit were summed-up during the final plenary session by the President of CEN, Friedrich Smaxwil. He noted that the demographic shift currently underway in Europe represents both "a major challenge for our societies and for our public services" and "a golden age of opportunities for companies that are ready and able to meet the needs of older consumers".

"At the same time, it is also a huge opportunity for the European Standardization Organizations, if we are able to show that our standards can also contribute to meeting the needs of older citizens and consumers," said the CEN President.

According to Mr Smaxwil, the Summit in Istanbul "has highlighted the importance of working in close cooperation with all the relevant stakeholders, including businesses, public authorities and service providers, as well as organizations that are able to represent the needs and wishes of older citizens and consumers". The outcomes of the Summit will help CEN and CENELEC to strengthen their collaboration with all the relevant stakeholders and develop many more age-friendly standards in the coming years.

MCCAA is a full member of CEN and CENELEC and furhter information on standardization activities can be obtained by writing to standards@mccaa.org.mt 

 

 

MAY 2014

22 May 2014 - Reduction in the price of certain medicines

The Malta Competition and Consumer Affairs Authority and the Medicines Authority notify that the prices of certain medicines have been reduced.

Click Here to view Press Release

Consumers may call the Medicines Authority on helpline 2343 9111 if they require further information or assistance. This helpline can be contacted between Mondays and Fridays from 9:00 a.m. till 1:00 p.m. 

 

APRIL 2014

16th April 2014 - The Office for Competition carries out a sector inquiry into loan interest rates offered by banks to SMEs, merchant service charges and interchange fees.

Click Here to view Press Release

 

14th April 2014 - Sweep 2013: Coordinated enforcement action leads to greater complaince with Consumer Rights on travel websites. 

A "sweep" is an EU-wide screening of websites, to identify breaches of consumer law and to subsequently ensure its enforcement. The sweep is coordinated by the European Commission and run simultaneously by national enforcement authorities based on the provisions of the Consumer Protection Cooperation (CPC) regulation. The Travel Services Sweep took place in 27 EU Member States, Norway and Iceland in June 2013. Websites offering air travel and accommodation or both were checked; wherein a website offering both services was counted twice.

A growing percentage of European citizens purchase travel services online: in 2012, 32% of European consumers with access to internet booked air tickets or a hotel online (Eurostat data e-shopping survey 2012). Travel, tourism and related sectors account for roughly 10% of EU GDP. European citizens made in 2011 more than 1 billion holiday trips, out of which nearly 80% in the EU.

For the press release issued by the European Commission on the Sweep 2013, please click HERE.

 

 

MARCH 2014

13th March 2014 - SBS enters the European standardisation scene

Small Business Standards (SBS) is the association representing European SMEs in the standardisation process at European and International levels. SBS members are national and European sectorial and interprofessional associations representing SMEs all over Europe working in and out of the EU. The work conducted under SBS is mandated and financed by the European Commission.

In the first weeks of March, Small Business Standards set out to increase its visibility towards important actors in the European standardisation environment. Putting forward its priorities in the interest of SMEs, SBS positioned itself as the SME representative. The more SMEs are involved in standards, better is Europe’s chance of having competitive and innovative enterprises.

UEAPME Secretary General Peter FAROSS, representing Small Business Standards (SBS) at the EU Standardisation Working Group 'Operational Aspects and Strategy' meeting on 4th March, emphasised the special importance to have SME friendly standards so as to bring SME innovation to the market. European Commission and Member States representatives, ESOs, NSOs as well as members of the Working Group were informed about SBS objectives, i.e. representing the interests of SMEs in the standardisation process at European level, raising awareness of SMEs on standardisation and motivating SMEs to participate in the standardisation process.

SBS Project Manager Sandrine LAURENT attended the CEN-CENELEC Network of SME Helpdesks’ first meeting on 10th March, organised to maximise support to SMEs, where she underlined SBS’ priorities for 2014 and 2015 as enabling SMEs to be better positioned in the European standardisation process. “There is also a serious urgency in taking out an assessment of SME needs so as to tackle the areas more adequate to SMEs and their position in the standardisation world.” Ms Laurent also reminded participants about the SBS call for experts launched at the beginning of the month with a deadline on 24th March.

It has been an intensive couple of weeks during which SBS presented and defended SME interests, at both European and national levels, towards all involved actors in the European Standardisation world.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION PLEASE CONTACT: Sandrine Laurent, SBS Project Manager, Tel +32 (0)2 285 07 15 Email: sandrine.laurent@sbs-sme.eu Jenny Manin, SBS Press and Communications Officer, Tel +32 (0)496 520 329 Email: pressoffice@ueapme.com

 or  MCCAA Standardization Directorate – 2395 2000, standards@mccaa.org.mt

                         

 

Consumer Classroom Website launches Second Interschool Competition 

 

The European Commission’s consumer education website Consumer Classroom has launched its second Interschool Competition!

Secondary schools teachers can compete by submitting an interactive activity until April 2nd.

This year the theme is  “Online Shopping. Know enough to make the best decisions!”.

The winners will be announced on May 20th 2014.

For more information about the competition, the calendar and the prizes, available in EU official languages, please click here.

 

FEBRUARY 2014

 

19 February 2014 - CEN-CENELEC-ETSI PRESS RELEASE

New European Standard will help to make ICT products and services accessible for all.

The European Standardization Organizations (CEN, CENELEC and ETSI) are pleased to announce the publication of a new European Standard on accessibility requirements for Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) products and services. This new standard (EN 301 549) is the first European Standard for accessible ICT. It is intended in particular for use by public authorities and other public sector bodies during procurement, to ensure that websites, software and digital devices are more accessible – so they may be used by persons with a wide range of abilities.

The new European Standard on 'Accessibility requirements suitable for public procurement of ICT products and services in Europe' (EN 301 549) was produced by CEN, CENELEC and ETSI in response to a request from the European Commission (Mandate 376). It was developed by an international team of experts, with the participation of the ICT industry and organizations representing consumers, people with disabilities and older persons.

The new European Standard is complemented by a series of three Technical Reports (TR 101 550, TR 101 551 and TR 101 552). Together, these documents set out accessibility requirements that can be applied to a wide range of products and services related to ICT, including computers, smartphones and other digital devices, ticketing machines, websites and emails. The aim is to ensure that ICT products and services are accessible either directly or through compatibility with assistive technologies such as text-to-speech, so that everyone can access information and use services that are being delivered electronically.

The new European Standard and its accompanying Technical Reports provide a framework for developing a wide range of applications that will make ICT products and services more accessible for the 80 million Europeans who are living with various types of disability. Potential applications include audio and/or tactile interfaces that can be used by visually impaired persons, or hardware such as smartphones and laptops that can be operated using one hand.

EN 301 549 is the most up-to-date standard for ICT accessibility, and it was developed through an inclusive process with the active involvement of relevant stakeholders. While the accessibility requirements are defined in a form that is suitable for use in public procurement, they could also be used in other contexts such as procurement in the private sector.

Luis Jorge Romero, ETSI’s Director General, said: "Addressing accessibility is now becoming an important market-driven necessity and ETSI aims to help industry and operators to avoid creating technologies that exclude users from the information society. We also aim to help increase the quality and usability of products and services for everyone, with standardization processes that ensure consideration of 'Design for All' issues in every newly developed standard if appropriate."

Elena Santiago Cid, Director General of CEN and CENELEC, said: "In CEN and CENELEC, we believe that including accessibility requirements in European standards will deliver both societal and economic benefits – by helping to expand the market for accessible products and services. Public authorities are making significant efforts to ensure that their services can be used by all, and they have entrusted the European Standardization Organizations to support these efforts. We hope that this new European Standard will be widely used, not just by the public sector and ICT suppliers, but also by other companies and organizations."

CEN, CENELEC and ETSI have made sure that the accessibility requirements contained in their documents are consistent with other global accessibility requirements. This will help to expand and open-up the international market for accessible ICT products and services.

For further information contact the Standardization Directorate of MCCAA on e-mail: standards@mccaa.org.mt

 

 

JANUARY 2014 

Launching of Information Kiosks for Consumers and Businesses

The Information, Education and Research Directorate within the Office for Consumer Affairs of the Malta Competition and Consumer Affairs Authority (MCCAA) has set up information kiosks at different commercial centres.  The Directorate’s officers manning these kiosks will provide information to consumers on their rights and obligations while they are shopping. The officers will also provide information to businesses and sellers.

This pilot project was launched by Dr. Helena Dalli, Minister for Social Dialogue, Consumer Affairs and Civil Liberties. During the launch Dr. Dalli stressed the importance of consumer education and that such education should start from a young age both within the family and at schools. Dr Dalli also said that particular attention will be paid to the more vulnerable consumers so that they will also have enough knowledge about their rights.

More information about the information kiosks may be obtained from the MCCAA through its freephone 8007 4400.

  

SEPTEMBER

2 September 2013 - MCCAA public consultation on European Standard “Beauty Salon Service”

MCCAA is organising an information session aimed at informing beauticians on a European Standard that is being drafted and which will become a Maltese Standard in the coming year or so.  The scope of this Standard is to provide requirements and recommendations for the provision of professional beauty salon services.  

Beauticians are being invited to this meeting  so as to be informed with the standardization process involved, the contents of the standard and to obtain their feedback.  Meeting will be held on Monday 30th September 2013 starting at 18.00hrs at:

Malta Competition and Consumer Affairs Authority,
Mizzi House,
National Road
Blata l-Bajda

Attendance is free of charge, but registration is required.  To register for the meeting and for a copy of the draft standard please contact:

Ms. Melanie Camilleri: melanie-n.camilleri@mccaa.org.mt; tel: 2395 2414, 2395 2000

 

AUGUST 

 

MCCAA Offices closed 

The Malta Competition and Consumer Affairs  Authority (MCCAA) wishes to inform the general public that its offices at Mizzi House, National Road, Blata-l-Bajda, will be closed between the 12th and 21st August 2013.

The general public may still call at the MCCAA offices situated at 47A, South Street, Valletta during normal office hours.

They may also contact the Authority on tel. nos. 21 221901, 21 227070 or on Freephone 8007 4400.

We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause. MCCAA offices will re-open as from Thursday 22nd August 2013.

 

8 August 2013 - Draft Maltese Standard for Public Comment

The Standards and Metrology Institute of MCCAA has made available to the public a draft Maltese standard DSM 3600:2013  "Indoor Play Facilities - Safety Requirements for Indoor Play Facilities and their Management".  The draft standard is available for download from HERE.

Comments are welcome up to 31st September 2013.  These can be sent to Head of Standardization and will be considered by the Technical Committee before finalizing the Standard.  The Draft Standard may be modified before being issued as a Maltese Standard.

 

JUNE

14 June 2013 - Public Consultation on draft Regulations providing for the power to waive or reduce the applicable fine in cartel investigations

The Office for Competition is launching a public consultation on the draft regulations providing for the power to waive or reduce the applicable fine in cartel investigations and invites all interested stakeholders and the general public to submit their views. The draft regulations in Maltese and English, together with a background note may be accessed by CLICKING HERE. Comments should be sent to the Office for Competition in writing by 9th August 2013 on the following email address: timothy.farrugia@mccaa.org.mt or at the following postal address:

 

Director General
Office for Competition
Malta Competition and Consumer Affairs Authority
Mizzi House
National Road
Blata l-Bajda. HMR 9010
Malta

 

MAY 

31 May 2013 - Seminar 'Buying with Confidence'

 

20 May 2013 - World Metrology Day

May 20 is World Metrology Day, commemorating the anniversary of the signing of the Metre Convention in 1875. This treaty provides the basis for a coherent measurement system worldwide.

The theme chosen for 2013 is Measurements in daily life. In the course of a typical day it is surprising how often measurements come into play, whether (among many possible examples) checking the time, purchasing food or produce, filling up a vehicle with fuel, or undergoing a blood pressure check.

These, and countless other activities in daily life, require measurements of one sort or another. Yet accurate measurements are taken for granted nowadays. Not surprisingly, most people are unaware that in the background there is a worldwide community specializing in metrology, the science of measurements, making sure it all works. Everybody depends on this community doing its job, and doing it well.

Across the world, national metrology institutes continually advance measurement science by developing and validating new measurement techniques at whatever level of sophistication is needed. They also participate in comparisons coordinated by the Bureau International des Poids et Mesures (BIPM) to ensure the reliability of measurement results worldwide.

Many measuring instruments are controlled by law or are subject to regulatory control, for example the scales used to weigh goods in a shop, instruments to measure environmental pollution, or meters used to bill energy. The International Organization of Legal Metrology (OIML) develops international Recommendations, the aim of which is to align and harmonize requirements for these types of instruments worldwide.

World Metrology Day recognizes and celebrates the contribution of all the people that work in intergovernmental and national organizations throughout the year on behalf of all.

 

16 May 2013 - RAPEX Annual Report 2012

The new RAPEX Annual Report from the European Commission for 2012 was published today. In its introduction, the European Commissioner for Health and Consumer Policy Tonio Borg in the introduction remarks that since its creation in 2004, the RAPEX system has been instrumental in protecting European consumers’ health and safety. It has provided the necessary platform for the essential exchange of information on dangerous products between Member State authorities and the European Commission. If in 2011 there was a decrease in the total number of RAPEX notifications, 2012 marks the return of an upward curve. This increase may be accredited to the increased circulation of dangerous products, or, more hopefully, to the tireless determination of the Member State authorities and the Commission to remain vigilant and proactive in the protection of consumer safety.

The increase in notifications may also be attributed to the improved and updated IT system for RAPEX, which better facilitates the work of the authorities in the Member States and the Commission. This year has seen significant updates to the RAPEX system and we continue to strive to improve both the efficiency and the visibility of results through effective follow-up action and communication. The full report can be found at

http://ec.europa.eu/consumers/safety/rapex/docs/2012_rapex_report_en.pdf

 

APRIL

17th April 2013 - Report on SMEST Workshop held in Malta on 8th April 2013

8th April 2013 - SMEST Workshop in Malta

5th April 2013 - Seminar 'Ghal aktar protezzjoni tal-Konsumatur' 

1st April 2013 - Another organization certified by MCCAA against MSA EN ISO 9001

The latest organization to be certified by MCCAA against MSA EN ISO 9001 is Foilplus Self Adhesive Labels Ltd of address KW 18, Corradino Industrial Estate, Paola, Malta and website http://www.foilplus.com.mt 

For further information about the MCCAA certification services, kindly click here

 

MARCH

14 March 2013 - Towards a Europe-wide database of accidents and injuries

A broad coalition of European organisations (including CEN and CENELEC) has come together to call on the European Commission to propose setting up a Pan-European Accident and Injury Data System. They are convinced that such a system would contribute to fewer accidents and injuries. Moreover, the cost of creating such a system would be more than offset by reductions in health care costs.

Roughly 5.7 million people are admitted to hospital annually as a result of injuries sustained in accidents. 34 million others are treated as outpatients.

41 million injuries per year is not only an extraordinarily high number but also contribute to significant healthcare costs (estimated at €78 billion each year ). 73% of such accidents occur at home or while engaged in leisure, including sports.

Aiming to reduce the number of preventable injuries and also healthcare costs, European business groups, consumer organisations, standardisation bodies and safety promoters together urge the European Commission to establish an EU-wide accident and injury data system.

To mark the 15th annual European Consumer Day, 28 organisations have joined forces to stress the need to tackle the current disorder of data collection. There is a clear need for a system that allows data to be more easily compared acrossEurope.

Trailing more than 30 years behind a proven and successful US-system, an adequately funded single European database would prompt significant decreases in the costs associated with the medical treatment of injuries.  

Such a European injury and accident database would require a representative sample of emergency centres to record the cause of such accidents. Using this resource, national authorities would then pool and share the data into a European system, helping manufacturers to adapt their products, providing a basis for public awareness-raising campaigns, assisting legislators and surveillance authorities and standardisers to make more informed risk assessment decisions and developing better product standards.

The Joint Call for a Pan-European Accident and Injury Data System is an initiative of ANEC, BEUC, BUSINESSEUROPE, CEN, CENELEC, EuroCommerce, EuroSafe and Orgalime. This initiative is also supported by ACFSE, AGE Platform Europe, CAPIEL, CECAPI, CECED, ECSA, EFLM, EGMF, ELA, ENPC, ESF, ESTES, ETUI, EuPHA, Euralarm, FENA, FSEU, ILSE, PROSAFE and TIE.

The Joint Call was formally presented this morning (14 March) to Tonio Borg, European Commissioner for Health and Consumer Policy, at the European Consumer Day Conference inBrussels, organised by the European Economic and Social Committee.

Elena Santiago Cid, Director General of CEN and CENELEC, said: "A truly comprehensive pan-European database of accidents and injuries would provide valuable information for those who are developing and revising European standards in relation to all kinds of products. It would enable our experts to identify and assess specific risks associated with particular types of products, and then look for ways to eliminate or minimise these risks. The result should be better standards leading to safer products, which also means fewer accidents and injuries."

 

FEBRUARY

26 February 2013 - Imnedija Ufficjalment il-Kampanja Pubblicitarja ta' l-Awtorita' ta' Malta ghall-Kompetizzjoni u ghall-Affarijiet tal-Konsumatur

 

JANUARY

30 January 2013 - EU Public Consultation - Review of the internal market legislation for industrial products

The EU Diretorate-General Enterprise and Industry has just launched a public consultation on the internal market for products.

This public consultation explores issues related to the identification and elimination of remaining barriers to the internal market for industrial products, in particular for products not subject to Union harmonisation rules. It also aims at identifying specific problems associated with the bulk of harmonisation legislation for industrial products and its application as well as the potential for simplification. These issues relate for instance to CE marking and conformity assessment.

The link to the web page of this consultation:

http://ec.europa.eu/enterprise/newsroom/cf/itemdetail.cfm?item_id=6375&lang=en&title=Review%2Dof%2Dthe%2Dinternal%2Dmarket%2Dlegislation%2Dfor%2Dindustrial%2Dproducts

 

30 January 2013 - Unit Pricing

The Malta Competition and Consumer Affairs Authority (MCCAA) is currently carrying out an information campaign about unit pricing as established by the Government Notices No. 46 and 47, published in the Government Gazette dated 15th January 2013. These notices stipulate that retail outlets with an area of less than 200 square metres and goods with a content of less than 50 grams or 50 millilitres are being exempted from displaying the unit price and only have to indicate the products' final selling price. MCCAA officers are currently visiting retail outlets to inform them about these notices that will come into force on 1st March 2013. For further information one may contact the Authority on tel. no. 2395 2000 or send an email at info@mccaa.org.mt

30 ta' Jannar 2013 - Prezz ta' l-Unita' 

Bhalissa l-Awtorità ta' Malta ghall-Kompetizzjoni u ghall-Affarijiet tal-Konsumatur (MCCAA) ghaddejja b’kampanja ta’ informazzjoni dwar il-prezz tal-unita’ ta’ kejl kif stabbilit permezz tal-Avvizi tal-Gvern Nri. 46 u 47 li dehru fil-Gazzetta tal-Gvern tal-15 ta’ Jannar 2013. Permezz ta’ dawn l-Avvizi il-hwienet bl-imnut b’daqs ta’ inqas minn200 metru kwadru u oggetti b’kontenut ta’ inqas minn 50 gramma jew 50 millilitru qeghdin jigu ezentati milli juru l-prezz tal-unità u juru biss il-prezz tal-oggett. L-Ufficjali ta’ din l-Awtorità qeghdin iduru l-hwienet bl-imnut biex jinfurmaw lis-sidien dwar dawn l-Avvizi li sejrin jidhlu fis-sehh mill- 1 ta’ Marzu. Ghal iktar informazzjoni wiehed jista’ jcempel lill-Awtorita’ fuq in-numru 23952000 jew permezz ta’ email info@mccaa.org.mt

 

29 January 2013 - The Pharmacy of Your Choice (POYC) certified by MCCAA against MSA EN ISO 9001

The Pharmacy of Your Choice (POYC) is the latest organization to be certified by MCCAA against MSA EN ISO 9001. The presentations of the certificate was made by Hon. Dr. Jason Azzopardi on behalf of the Authority in the presence of Hon. Dr. Joseph Cassar, Minister for Health, the Elderly and Community Care, and MCCAA Chairman, Ing. Francis E. Farrugia.

ISO 9001 Certificate to POYC

 

24 January 2013 -  MCA rolls out comparison website for telecom tariffs

Which internet plan should I subscribe to for my home? Should I opt for a communications services bundle? Which smartphone is best for me? Do I need a tablet with internet access after all? What are the best rates at which to make calls when overseas?

These are some of the questions most of us ask when deciding which communication services we need or afford. But the wide choice is often confusing.

A recent initiative by the Malta Communications Authority aims to make it far simpler for us to find what’s available on the market and help us make our choices in terms of services and pricing, through a free tool at www.telecosts.com.

“The number of different tariff plans and bundled offers has grown significantly over the past years as a direct result of increased competition. Consumers may struggle to identify the tariff plan or offer that would benefit them the most, particularly in view of the multi-player environment that has evolved,” an MCA representative explained.

“From our experience, we have seen that many consumers have remained on the same tariff since subscribing to their service. Such consumers may potentially be missing out on more advantageous offers. We also feel that it is a tool that will contribute to enhanced competition by driving service providers to strive to have their tariff plans and offers topping the lists.”

The website provides comparison on fixed-line, mobile, broadband and bundled tariff plans by different Maltese service providers in one place. The system will initially invite you to provide some basic information on how you use the service, such as, in the case of mobile telephony approximate duration of your calls, approximate number of monthly text messages sent, the time of the day you mostly use your phone, and so on.

Based on these choices, the system will provide information on the tariff plans that provide the nearest match to you parameters.

The information provided on this website is updated regularly as it is managed directly by the service provider themselves. It is therefore in the service providers’ interest to ensure that the information is updated with the most recent tariff plans and offers. (The Times, 24th January 2013)

2012 

December

19 December 2012

The general public, as well as the relevant stakeholders such as manufacturers, importers and distributors of foodstuffs are being duly informed that further to Government Gazette Notice of 6th November 2012, No. 18,985 p.12, 445 and the Information Meeting that took place on Tuesday, 13th November 2012, the deadline for health claims on foods that are no longer permitted has expired as from Friday 14th December. All labels and packaging of foodstuffs are to adhere to the relevant legislation. Links below:

https://gov.mt/en/Government/Government%20Gazette/Notices/Pages/11/notices-061112.aspx;

https://gov.mt/en/Government/Government%20Gazette/Documents/11/Government%20Gazette%20-%206%20November.pdf

 

4 December 2012 - Award of Certificate

MCCAA is pleased to announce the award of Certificate to Capital Pest Control (CPC) to MSA 2000:2009 “Biotechnology - Control of Public Health Pests - Operators’ Management System Requirements” that demonstrate that CPC are following best practices when delivering their pest control services to their clients and are able to provide a more professional service to their clients.

Maltese Standard MSA 2000:2009 deals with the professional management of pest control and aims at providing organizations involved in pest control with the elements of effective management system requirements.  The standard has been prepared and agreed upon by all key national stakeholders of this industry including the Malta Chamber of Commerce, Enterprise and Industry, GRTU, MHRA and the Health Inspectorate of the Department of Environmental Health. With MSA 2000:2009, clients using services offered by a pest control operators that comply with this Standard, have a better chance of meeting their expectations and an increased opportunity to achieve set targets safely.

Clients having achieved MCCAA certification can be found at: http://www.mccaa.org.mt/en/certification

 

november

21 November - Draft Maltese Standard for Public Comment

The Standards and Metrology Institute of MCCAA has revised the Maltese standard MSA 1400:2006 “Motor Vehicle Repairs - Repairers management system- Requirements” and has launched a public enquiry.  The draft standard is available for download from here.

Comments are welcome up to 31st January 2013.  These can be sent to Head of Standardization and will be considered by the Technical Committee before finalizing the Standard.  The Draft Standard may be modified before being issued as a Maltese Standard.

 

14 November - European agreement will lead to better training of guide dogs and more independence for blind people

Experts from some of Europe’s leading guide dog training schools have worked together to develop a set of criteria for the competences of guide dog instructors. This new framework should lead to better training of guide dogs as well as improved support for blind people throughout Europe, enabling them to enjoy greater mobility and independence in their daily lives. The reference criteria for the competences of guide dog mobility instructors have been published today by CEN (the European Committee for Standardization).

The new CEN Workshop Agreement "Guide dog mobility instructor – Competences" (CWA 16520) provides reference criteria for the essential competences of guide dog mobility instructors.  It sets out the competences and knowledge that are needed to train guide dogs and also to provide blind persons with instruction and advice on how to communicate and work with their guide dogs.

The CEN Workshop (CEN/WS 65) on European Guide Dog Mobility Instructor Training was set up in the framework of the European Guide Dog Mobility Standards (EGDMS) project, which has been supported by the European Union under the Leonardo da Vinci programme. The objective of this Workshop was to develop a reference document for the training of Guide Dog Instructors in line with national and European systems for vocational qualifications, and consistent with EU policies to promote occupational mobility within Europe.

The partners of the EGDMS project are convinced that the newly published agreement will serve as a basis for the organisations that provide guide dogs to implement minimum standards for the training of Guide Dog Instructors across the whole of Europe. Further information can be obtained by sending mail to standards@mccaa.org.mt

 

9 November – Rapex Weekly Report: report 45, 2012

RAPEX is the EU rapid alert system for all dangerous consumer products, with the exception of food, pharmaceutical and medical devices. It allows for the rapid exchange of information between Member States and the Commission of measures taken to prevent or restrict the marketing or use of products posing a serious risk to the health and safety of consumers. Both measures ordered by national authorities and measures taken voluntarily by producers and distributors are covered by RAPEX.

The report includes detailed information on the products concerned, the risks, the notifying Member State, and the measures adopt! ed in response. Pictures are included where available.

Click here to view this week's report: Rapex Weekly Report: report 45, 2012

The Commission does not take any responsibility for the accuracy of the information provided. In the event that further information received from a contact point regarding an already published notification leads to the modification or withdrawal of the information, the Commission will include a corrigendum or notice of withdrawal in the next weekly overview.

 

9 November - Consultation Document: Restriction of Use of Hazardous Substances in Electrical and Electronic Equipment Regulations, 2012

 

2 November - UPDATE - Information Meeting with regard to Health Claims to be held on Tues. 13th November 2012

Location: MCCAA offices, National Road, Blata l-Bajda from 10:00am to 11:00am.

Further information and registration please contact MEUSAC email: consult.muesac@gov.mt and telephone no.: 2200 3300.

 

October

26th October 2012 - Public Warning Statement issued by the Director General (Consumer Affairs) within the Malta Competition and Consumer Affairs Authority 

The Director General (Consumer Affairs) hereby issues this Public Warning Statement according to Article 8 of the Consumer Affairs Act (Cap. 378), identifying and giving information and/or issuing warnings about services supplied in an unsatisfactory manner by:

Golden Travel Club Limited (C 33107) that has its registered Office at 2, Salvu Psaila Street, Birkirkara, and operates commercially under the trade name FANTASY TOURS operating as tour operator, travel agent, tourist agent, travel and tour charterer, and contractor, caterer for all travel and tourist requirements and promoter of all kind of conveyances of tourists and travellers; and also as has been repeatedly established by a number of decisions of the Consumer Claims Tribunal from where it results that the above-mentioned operator of Fantasy Tours fails to abide by the obligations it has taken upon itself with regard to these services.

 

25 October 2012 - Information Meeting with regard to Health Claims in November 2012

Information Meeting re the Health Claims Regulation (EU) # 432 of 2012

The Technical Regulations Division (TRD) of the Malta Competition and Consumer Affairs Authority (MCCAA), in collaboration with MEUSAC, is organizing an information meeting with regard to Health Claims stated on food packaging (COMMISSION REGULATION (EU) No 432/2012 establishing a list of permitted health claims made on foods, other than those referring to the reduction of disease risk and to children’s development and health) link: http://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=OJ:L:2012:136:0001:0040:en:PDF and the European Commission DG SANCO’s Register of the permitted, authorized and non-authorized Health Claims (can be found here: http://ec.europa.eu/nuhclaims/?event=search&CFID=31328438&CFTOKEN=11006891&jsessionid=9312711195ba9711d635743f6e4e5b5d7378TR )

The meeting (details to be confirmed) is tentatively scheduled to be held on Tuesday, 13th November 2012 at the MCCAA premises in Blata l-Bajda from 10:00am to 11:00am.

The deadline stated in the mentioned Health Claims Regulation for the non-permitted health claims that can be utilised on food packaging is that of 14 December 2012 (or until stocks placed on the market last).

All interested stakeholders are encouraged to attend, as details with regard to the enforcement of the said legislation will be given.

Further details confirming the date, time and location as well as invitations will be sent in the beginning of November.

 

22 October 2012 – New ISO Standards

Are you safe online? New ISO standard for cyber security

A new ISO standard will help ensure safety of online transactions and personal information exchanged over the Internet, and protect your computer when browsing any Websites.

As we rely on the Internet for all kinds of activities, from sharing important work files to paying our bills, cyber security has become a key concern for all of us. A new ISO standard, ISO/IEC 27032:2012, Information technology – Security techniques – Guidelines for cyber security, will make cyberspace safer.

New ISO standard for spectacle frames

ISO 12870:2012, Ophtalmic optics – Spectacle frames – Requirements and test methods, applies to spectacle frames for all prescription lenses. The standard includes guidelines for testing, inspection compliance, marking and information labeling. In addition, it provides recommendations for the design of spectacle frames.

Smile with confidence when you brush your teeth

Toothbrushes come in all colours, and claim different properties, but how can we be assured that they will perform and not break or fall apart during normal use? ISO 20126:2012, Dentistry – Manual toothbrushes – General requirements and test methods , does just that.

The standard outlines passes-fail criteria, physical inspection guidelines, fatigue resistance, chemical challenge and handle strength requirements and tets, as well as marking, labeling and packaging guidelines for manual toothbrushes.

For further information on these standards send e-mail to standards@mccaa.org.mt

 

19 October 2012 – Rapex Weekly Report: report 42, 2012

RAPEX is the EU rapid alert system for all dangerous consumer products, with the exception of food, pharmaceutical and medical devices. It allows for the rapid exchange of information between Member States and the Commission, of measures taken to prevent or restrict the marketing or use of products posing a serious risk to the health and safety of consumers. Both measures ordered by national authorities and measures taken voluntarily by producers and distributors are covered by RAPEX.

The report includes detailed information on the products concerned, the risks, the notifying Member State, and the measures adopted in response. Pictures are included where available.

Click here to view this week's report: Rapex Weekly Report: report 42, 2012

The Commission does not take any responsibility for the accuracy of the information provided. In the event that further information received from a contact point regarding an already published notification leads to the modification or withdrawal of the information, the Commission will include a corrigendum or notice of withdrawal in the next weekly overview.

 

18 October 2012 -  Two-Pin Plugs

According to the Electrical Accessories Regulations, any electrical accessory should not be fitted with a plug that does not fit into the Maltese 3-pin socket directly, but a ‘conversion plug’ must be fitted by the retailer. The ‘conversion plug’ must be fitted in such a way that a tool is required to remove it.

 

14 October 2012 - World Standards Day 

Each year on 14 October, Malta joins the rest of the World in observing World Standards Day. The event honours the commitment and collaborative efforts of the thousands of experts worldwide who develop the voluntary technical agreements that are published as international standards.

This year World Standards Day theme is “Less waste, better results, standards increase efficiency”

For World Standards Day message

http://www.iso.org/iso/world-standards-day2012

 World Standards Day

 

5th October 2012 - Reform of the European standardisation system

The Council of the European Union on 4th October adopted a regulation aimed at modernising and improving the European standardisation system (PE-CO_S 32/12 and 13876/12 ADD1). Harmonised standards are a well-established tool for promoting the technical conformity of products. They are drawn up by the European Standardisation bodies (ESOs) and open to voluntary, though widespread, use by manufacturers throughout Europe in order to fulfill essential requirements of products laid down in EU legislation. The European Commission regularly gives mandates to the ESOs for developing new standards.

The regulation adapts the current legal framework to simplify it and to cover new aspects in order to reflect the latest developments and future challenges in standardisation. It includes, in particular, means for the development of voluntary standards for services and not only for products as it is the case nowadays. The Regulation will enter into force on 1 January 2013

 

2 October 2012 - Electrical Adaptors

MCCAA reply to the letter to the Editor published on the Times of Malta of 2 October 2012.

 

2 October 2012 - Food Science & Technology Two Day Intensive Course

A two day intensive course on Food Science and Food Technology was organized by the MCCAA and held in Blata l-Bajda on the 17th and 18th September 2012.

 

september

26 September 2012 - E-Cigarettes

Information Document regarding E-CIGARETTES, their parts and labels.

21 September 2012 - Malta Elected to the General Council of ISO (International Organization for Standardization)

During the 35th International Organization for Standardization (ISO) General Assembly meeting which was held last week inSan DiegoCalifornia,Maltawas elected to the General Council of the Organization for the term 2013 – 2014. ISO is made of 163 counties and is the world’s largest developer of voluntary International Standards. International Standards give state of the art specifications for products, services and good practice, helping to make industry more efficient and effective. Developed through global consensus, they help to break down barriers to international trade. Conformity to International Standards helps reassure consumers that products are safe, efficient and good for the environment. The ISO General Council is made up of 20 member bodies elected for a term of two years, of which six are permanent members –USA,UK,Germany, France,JapanandChina. Membership to the Council is open to all member bodies and elections are held at each General Assembly for the vacant seats. This is the third time thatMaltawas elected to the General Council. The Malta Competition and Consumer Affairs Authority (MCCAA) representMaltain ISO.

Next year ISO will be holding its Annual Consumer Policy (COPOLCO) meeting inMalta.

7 September 2012 - Expression of interest - Occupational health and safety auditors

 MCCAA is seeking the services of expertise in the area of Occupational Health and Safety to form part of an audit team to assess organisations against the requirements of MSA OHSAS 18001 Occupational Health and Safety Management Systems.  Preferred candidates would need to have the necessary qualifications in OHSAS and at least 3 years of auditing experience.

Interested parties are invited to submit their credentials (detailed CV, qualifications and auditing certificates) not later than 28th September 2012 to: Head of Certification .(certification@mccaa.org.mt) Shortlisted candidates will be interviewed to demonstrate their competencies.

 7 September 2012 - Draft Maltese Standard on “Photo-voltaic Installation”

 The Standards and Metrology Institute of the Malta Competition and Consumer Affairs Authority is considering a proposal to start drafting a new Maltese Standard on “Photo-Voltaic Installation”.  Organisations, associations and other groups who are interested in participating in the development of this Maltese Standard are requested to write to the Head of Standardization (standards@mccaa.org.mt)

5th September 2012 - Intensive Food Science and Technology 2 day Course

The Malta Competition and Consumer Affairs Authority (MCCAA) is organizing a two day intensive Food Science and Food Technology course (topics found in link here) delivered by Leatherhead Food Research (UK) at the MCCAA offices in Blata l-Bajda on Monday, 17th and Tuesday, 18th September 2012; intended for foodstuffs’ manufacturers, importers and distributors as well as other stakeholders including government entities.

4th September 2012 - Call for tenders for Awareness Campaign and Organisation of Seminars for the Malta Competition and Consumer Affairs Authority 

Go to Tenders page for more information

 

August

3rd August 2012 - Call for quotations for seminar venues

Go to Tenders page to see all the requirements for the MCCAA call for quotations for seminar venues.

 

July

30th July 2012 - TRUST YOU scheme

PAVI Supermarket Ltd of Manwel Dimech Street, Qormi is the latest addition in the list of operators which have enrolled to the TRUST YOU scheme.


27th July 2012 - New Biocidal Products Regulation

A new regulation regarding biocides will be applicable as of 1 September 2013. Regulation (EU) No 528/2012 of the European Parliament and of the Council concerning the making available on the market and use of biocidal products will repeal and replace the current Directive 98/8/EC which was transposed under the Maltese law by Legal Notice 525 of 2010. more


23th July 2012 -  Information, Education and Research Directorate - Tips for consumers going to the London Olympics

The European Commission is fully aware of the challenges sport fans may face during the forthcoming Olympic Games which kick off on Friday 27th July in London. Therefore, in order to make life easier for them, the Commission has created a webpage with key consumer tips on how to plan a successful and stress-free trip to the Olympics and also on how to avoid consumer problems with travel, hotel-accomodation and shopping. This page offers essential hands-on information and links to services that can help visitors in case of complications that may arise.

Top tips on this webpage include:

How to avoid any accomodation pitfalls that may arise

How to be protected against delays, cancellations and denied boarding when travelling

How to be aware of one’s rights and obligations when purchasing goods and services from another EU territory

How citizens from the European Economic Area and Switzerland should obtain from their social security a European Health Insurance Card to access state healthcare in the UK at reduced fees.

The Commission also thinks it is worthwhile to make visitors from all around the globe familiar with the successful EU-wide emergency number, the 112.

The webpage tips can be accessed on: http://ec.europa.eu/dgs/health_consumer/london_2012/index_en.htm

 

17th July 2012 - MCCAA - Laboratory Services Directorate, Standards and Metrology Institute

The Laboratory Services Directorate has been granted accreditation for the testing of a wide range of construction products. Laboratory Services Directorate used to be the Malta National Laboratory which since May 2011 was absorbed by MCCAA. The laboratories are situated at Mosta Technopark. For further information sent e-mail to info@mccaa.org.mt


10th July 2012 - Collective Proceedings Act

On 1 August 2012, the Collective Proceedings Act (Cap. 520 of the Laws of Malta) shall come into force. The law was published on the 19 June 2012 in the Government Gazette. The law introduces class actions in Maltese legislation whereby a class representative (the plaintiff) files a lawsuit on behalf of a class of persons for alleged infringements of the competition, consumer or product safety legislation. The law allows claims arising from common issues to be examined in a single lawsuit. Collective proceedings may be instituted to seek the cessation of an infringement, the rectification of the consequences of an infringement and, or compensation for harm.


5th July 2012 - Office for Consumer Affairs - Public warning statement

With reference to the Public Warning Statement issued on 4th May 2012, according to Article 8 of the Consumer Affairs Act (Cap. 378), the Director General (Consumer Affairs) hereby issues this additional statement in respect of:

Marphil Gauci of identity card number 584391 M

Mr Marphil Gauci is now operating commercially inMaltaaccording to published advertisements under the trade name Total Waterproofing Supplies (TWS), which services consist of works for the alleged removal of mould and humidity from both roofs and walls as well as other surfaces; and also as has been repeatedly established by several decisions of the Consumer Claims Tribunal from where it results that Mr Gauci fails to abide by the obligations he takes upon himself in the commercial guarantees that he issues to consumers. 

The public is hereby being informed that Mr Gauci is known to give false names to consumers and changes trade names periodically.


1st July 2012 - 3D Distributions receives MSA EN ISO 9001 Certificate from MCCAA

3D Distributions has becomeMalta’s first marketing company to receive MSA EN ISO 9001. 3D operates mainly in the door-to-door distribution industry by delivering a vast array of magazines, brochures, leaflets and other promotional and informative mail for both private and public organizations. The certification process was carried out by MCCAA.


1st July 2012- MSA 100: 2002 Keyboard allocation of graphic  characters for data processing

Users of Android-based smartphones and tablets now have the facility to type in the Maltese language. The multitiling keyboard is easily downloaded and installed to provide the Maltese characters when typing anything from SMS to whole documents and social media updates. The Maltese language according to the National Standard MSA 100: 2002 Keyboard allocation of graphic  characters for data processing  -  was followed in the preparation of the freely available application.