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What is the difference between the CE and the VDE

2021/08/20 > Back

What is CE ?
CE stands for Conformitè Europëenne, the mark is defined as the European Union's (EU) mandatory conformity marking for regulating the goods sold within the European Economic Area (EEA) since 1985. It is the responsibility of the manufacturer or importer to ensure this mark is applied to products that meet the requirements. CE is self-certifying which means that if the compliant product does not meet a specific European product standard, the manufacturer or importer must document how the product is safe. Manufacturer can state that the product fulfills the safety requirement on its own with verifiable documentation, called a EC declaration of conformity. As so, the EC declaration of conformity is also called a CE Statement or CE certificate; But in fact, a CE certificate does not exist formally.

The CE marking procedure is one of self-certification. Generally, you can do everything yourself by following steps and guide you through the whole process. However conformance, and a small number of other consultancies exists because the CE marking process can be extremely complicated and time consuming.

What is VDE ?
VDE stands for Verband der Elektrotechnik, who is responsible for testing and certifying tools and appliances. The VDE Testing and Certification Institute is a nationally and internationally accredited institution in the field of testing and certification of electrical engineering devices, components, and systems, it is meant to indicate safety and quality in electrical, information and medical technologies. The spectrum of product tests covers safety, EMV, energy efficiency and other product features, as well as certification and assembly inspections. 

In case of products without mandatory testing, verification and documentation of conformity with EC Directives may be done by the manufacturer. Alternatively, he may entrust a neutral institute with this task, such as VDE.

The VDE Institute was granted accreditation for its testing laboratories as well as for its certification activities and was notified for the Single Market of the European Union (EU) in the body type NB 0366. Testing is conducted according to national and international standards. Beyond that, the VDE Institute offers a variety of conformity attestations enjoying appreciation world-wide.

Which is better?
Both certifications offer a similar standard of quality and safety, but the VDE certification is voluntary that means an indication of rigorous safety testing.

What will replace CE marking?
As of Jan 1 2023*, the CE marking will be replaced by UKCA marking for goods entering the Great Britain market, which includes England, Scotland and Wales.
*Last updated 24 August 2021: Placing manufactured goods on the market in Great Britain - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)