CE mark is a mandatory conformity which deals in the marking for certain products that are sold within the European Economic Area (EEA) since 1985. The CE mark is also found in the products which are sold outside the EEA and the products that are manufactured in or are designed to be sold in, the EEA. This thus makes the mark recognizable worldwide even to those people who are not familiar with the European Economic Area. It is in that sense which is similar to the FCC Declaration of the Conformity which is used on certain electronic devices that are sold in the United States.

The CE marking is thus the manufacturer’s declaration that the product meets the requirements of the applicable EC directives.

The mark consists of the CE logo and, if it is applicable, it also tells that the four-digit identification number of the Notified Body is also involved in the conformity assessment procedure.

“CE” was originated as an abbreviation of the Conformité Européenne which means  European Conformity but is not defined as such in the relevant legislation. The CE marking is a symbol of free marketability which is in the European Economic Area (Internal Market)”.                                       -WIKIPEDIA

The ISO certification standards play an important role in the EU’s industrial policy. The CE mark is however in conformity with the ISO standards. The CE mark also shows that the manufacturer or the importer claims compliance with the relevant EU legislation which is thus applicable to a particular product, with no regards as is paid to the place of manufacturing. Affixing the CE marking on a product, it is a declaration from a manufacturer, at its sole responsibility, by conforming to all the legal requirements in order to achieve the CE marking which allows free movement and the sale of the products throughout the European Economic Area.

It is also a  self-certification scheme. Retailers sometimes thus refer to their products as the “CE approved”, but the mark does not actually signify the approval. Certain categories of the products are thus required in order to go through a type-testing by an independent body in order to ensure conformity with the required technical standards, but CE helps in marking in itself does not certify that this has been done.


Wikipedia thus talks about how the CE marking is mandatory for certain product groups which are within the European Economic Area (EEA, the 28 member states of the EU, the EFTA countries Iceland, Norway and Liechtenstein) along with countries like Switzerland and Turkey. The manufacturer of the products which are made in the EEA and the importer of goods that are made in other countries must ensure that the CE-marked goods conform to the specific standards. Before May 1, 2004, there were fifteen European Union (EU) member countries, namely:











 The Netherlands

 Portugal Spain


 United Kingdom (Great Britain)

Along with the European Free Trade Association – EFTA’s three member states Iceland, Liechtenstein, and Norway. 

Since May 1, 2004, ten new member states also joined the European Union and have also adopted the CE-Marking requirements. These member states are Estonia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Lithuania, Poland, Slovakia, Hungary, Slovenia, Malta, and Latvia. Since January 1, 2007, Bulgaria and Romania had also joined the EU along with the adoption of the CE-Marking requirements. The EEA includes all the countries of the European Union, along with Iceland, Liechtenstein, and Norway. It also allows them to be part of the EEA single market. Switzerland is thus a member of EFTA, but it is neither an EU nor EEA member. It, however, is still a part of the single market.

Some of the members’ national standards institutes, which are a  part of the European standardization bodies, CEN and CENELEC, have also adopted the ISO standards as their national standards.

Related Post: What is ISO accreditation and how is it different from certification?