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Interview with Dermott Jewell, new ANEC President

The 30th ANEC General Assembly meeting elected Dermott Jewell (Ireland) as ANEC President for the term 2019 to 2021 by acclamation. He succeeds Arnold Pindar (UK) who had been President during four terms since 2011.

Dermott was kind enough to grant us an interview on his election.

Dermott portrait

Congratulations, Dermott, on your election as ANEC President!

Looking back on your career in ANEC, tell us about your beginnings and how you view the standardisation process, through your own background as a lawyer and professional mediator. 

Thank you! It is a very real honour to have been elected ANEC President. I joined the Consumers’ Association of Ireland in August 1994 and attended my first ANEC meeting in 1998. Since then, I have been constantly reminded of the extraordinary benefits, values and breadth of protections that standardisation delivers for the consumer, the environment and this planet.

Standardisation is ‘the process of implementing and developing technical standards based on the consensus of different parties that include firms, users, interest groups, standards organisations and governments’. As a lawyer, I understand that. As a mediator, I understand the personal context of needing to agree to disagree if progress and some form of consensus is to be achieved. But here in ANEC, it is as a consumer representative and advocate, working and sharing with the ANEC members and experts, that I gain greater insight of how significant is our contribution and, crucially, how it is of primary importance that there be continuity and growth of that contribution.

How do you view ANEC’s evolution over the years?

ANEC has engaged in many actions over many years through extraordinarily focussed and committed experts and advocates. For many of these experts and advocates, it reflects a lifetime’s work, readily given and represents a lasting and exceptional body of achievement by them, for Europe and for ANEC. We have great stories to tell – with positive reputational outcomes that we can build upon.

The environment in which ANEC exists is continually evolving and is becoming increasingly complex and challenging. In reviewing our future, we must strategize to build upon those successes and outcomes, and I look forward to bringing our community together to make ANEC increasingly visible, with our members also supported and strengthened.

As Irish member of the General Assembly for over 20 years, as a member of the Steering Committee and as the immediate past Vice-President, you are close to the challenges that the ANEC members, experts and staff meet daily. What do you see as the greatest challenge for ANEC?

ANEC has achieved some tremendous successes over the years. Perhaps the best known is the revision of the European Standards for domestic electrical appliances to ensure the safe use of literally millions of appliances by children, older people and persons with disabilities. But all of these successes rely on the efforts of our volunteer experts, supported by the professional Secretariat in Brussels.

We need to secure these resources and grow them, especially as the standardisation of products and services is becoming ever more complex. The European Commission and EFTA have supported ANEC for almost 25 years and I consider our relationship to be that of a partnership that has grown in terms of mutual understanding and respect – notably, in my opinion - for our delivery of significant value and protections for citizens.

Through the current ANEC Strategy, we have enjoyed many successful initiatives and attracted new partners and engaged together to achieve success and progress. However, we cannot be complacent and need to refocus our efforts beyond 2020 in building an independence of funding, our capacity, our experts and breadth of partners with whom we can and hope to engage.

What is your first objective as ANEC President?

I just mentioned the current ANEC Strategy. My first objective will be to lead development of the next Strategy which will take effect from January 2021. It will be the key agenda item at the first meeting of the newly-appointed ANEC Steering Committee in the autumn. In fact, we kicked-off defining the guiding principles of the new Strategy at a special session of the General Assembly meeting on 13 June. I was enormously impressed by the energy and magnitude of contributions from all who were there. I believe we have a great community in ANEC and we can continue to work to raise standards of protection and welfare for consumers still further.

It will be with great pride and commitment that I follow the huge work done by former Presidents, including my immediate predecessor, Arnold Pindar, and look to take ANEC forward to the best of my ability.

Thank you, President!

Thank you!


ANEC General Assembly meeting 2019

The 30th meeting of the ANEC General Assembly (ANEC/GA) was held on 13 & 14 June 2019 in Brussels. The first assembly of the 2019 to 2023 term, the meeting saw participation of members from 28 countries, as well the participation of several Chairs of the ANEC Working Groups.

GA ArnoldStephen

The meeting elected Dermott Jewell (Ireland) as ANEC President; Jens Henriksson (Sweden) as Vice-President, and re-elected Benedicte Federspiel (Denmark) as Treasurer. All three were elected by acclamation. Dermott succeeded Arnold Pindar (UK), who retired not only as President after eight years, but from a participation of more than 20 years in ANEC at governance and technical levels.

The meeting also elected the members of the ANEC Steering Committee (ANEC/SC), the board of the association, for its 2019 to 2021 term. The three Office Bearers are joined by Libor Dupal (Czechia), Marino Melissano (Italy), Rusné Juozapaitiené (Lithuania), Audun Skeidsvoll (Norway), Conchy Martín Rey (Spain), Marijana Lonchar Velkova (North Macedonia) and Christine Heemskerk (UK).

During the first afternoon, President Arnold Pindar, and Secretary-General Stephen Russell, gave an overview of the strategic and political developments over the past 12 months. The presentation was followed by a brainstorming session of ANEC/GA members and Working Group Chairs on what should be the guiding principles of the next ANEC Strategy and its priorities, taking into account the results of a survey sent to all ANEC members and experts in May. The ANEC/SC will consider how to develop the draft Strategy further at its meeting in the autumn.

                               laughing breakout session

                            Break out session

A special dinner was held that evening to mark Arnold’s retirement. Arnold literally serenaded members during his farewell speech. Stephen later presented him with matching fountain and ballpoint pens, engraved with Arnold’s initials.


The second day included a high-level panel discussion, moderated by the outgoing President. He welcomed Joaquim Nunes de Almeida, Director, DG GROW; Monique Goyens, Director General, BEUC; Paolo Falcioni, Director General, APPLiA; Gudrun Rognvaldardottir, Internal Market Division, EFTA Secretariat; Elena Santiago Cid, Director General, CEN-CENELEC. The discussion, with the participation of ANEC/GA members, looked at how standards could help the consumer of the future.



For more photos of ANEC’s GA, please follow this link

ANEC Annual Review 2018

annual review

We’re proud to share our Annual Review 2018, adopted by the ANEC/GA meeting, as a record of our continued contribution to raising standards for consumers.

Please enjoy it!

JIS closing conference


The Joint Initiative on Standardisation (JIS) formally came to a close at a high-level event, hosted by the Romanian Presidency of the EU in Bucharest on 7 June.

A unique collaborative initiative of the European Commission with standardisation stakeholders, the JIS started in November 2015. It delivered a strategic vision only seven months later, signed by Commissioner Bieńkowska in Amsterdam under the Dutch Presidency, and co-signed by many others then and since, including the ANEC President, Arnold Pindar. In the three years since Amsterdam, the JIS has seen its partners working to deliver 15 actions to implement the strategic vision.

ANEC contributed to several actions, not least Action 9 which focused on improving the inclusiveness of the European Standardisation System to all stakeholders.

Mr Pindar spoke on behalf of ANEC during the Romanian conference. He confirmed his belief that, “a European Standardisation System that is inclusive, and designed to meet business and societal needs simultaneously, helps give Europe competitive edge on the global stage”.

The Commission will soon make all documents related to the JIS available through the link, https://bit.ly/2X6lBgK.

ISO/IEC Guide 51

ISO/IEC Guide 51 “Safety aspects – Guidelines for their inclusion in standards” was submitted to a 5-yearly systematic review (SR) until 4 June. Possible conclusions of the SR are to Withdraw; Revise/Amend, or Confirm the Guide.

As ISO/IEC Guides are often translated at national level into languages other than the official ISO/IEC languages, a process that can take significant time, we proposed a full revision now would be premature. We added that, if no existing aspects need correction, updating should focus on “new issues to be considered”. Such an update could be included in an appendix or supplement to the current version. The outcome of the review is awaited.

Child Safety 

UK Child Safety Week

ANEC supported Child Safety Week, run by the UK’s Child Accident Prevention Trust (CAPT) from 3-9 June 2019, to raise awareness of the risks of child accidents and how they can be prevented. See www.childsafetyweek.org.uk.

The theme was Family life today: where’s the risk? A graphic highlighted the new dangers facing families today from our modern lifestyles and offers simple solutions to keep children safe.

ANEC has contributed to the European and international standards for almost all of the products shown.

family life

Also during Child Safety Week, colleagues from BSI-CPIN shared the video, “British Standards play a key role in consumer protection”. See https://bit.ly/2ZcFtLK.


European Accessibility Act (EAA)

The European Accessibility Act is now published in the Official Journal of the EU. Directive (EU) 2019/882 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 17 April 2019 addresses accessibility requirements for products and services. It will apply to various products and services (e.g. computers; e-books; self-service terminals; transport service information, including real-time travel information, consumer banking services) placed on the market after 28 June 2025.

Member States must adopt the laws, regulations & administrative provisions needed to achieve compliance with the Directive by 28 June 2022, applying those measures from 28 June 2025.

The publication of the EAA represents a significant achievement for ANEC and the disability movement, and the culmination of many years of advocacy.

The EAA is a New Approach Directive which uses standards to provide presumption of conformity to the legal requirements. It contains provisions on the accessibility requirements, standards, market surveillance, CE marking, etc.

ANEC has already started discussions with the EC about the future standardisation request needed to develop the Harmonised Standards that will provide presumption of conformity to the Directive. We will participate in development of the standards. Finally, ANEC will stay committed to collaboration with the disability movement on the effective implementation of the new legal provisions.



On the 20th June, ANEC expert, Chris Evans, participated as a panel member during EU Sustainable Energy Week 2019 (EUSEW19). This session was titled, ‘Eco-design and Energy labels: setting standards for consumers’.

The panel highlighted that European Standards are essential tools in supporting EU legislation arising from the Eco-design and the Energy Labelling Regulations. They provide approaches and methodologies to measure and evaluate whether products comply with regulatory requirements. The panel addressed the characteristics that standards need in order to be ‘fit for purpose’ for the new Eco-design and Energy Labelling requirements.

It was also noted this is key work in helping consumers as it provides information on the energy performance of household appliances. Nevertheless, we stressed that test standards must reflect true consumer use if the energy label is to be reliable.

Digital Society

European Cybersecurity Act

The European Cybersecurity Act was published on 7 June 2019 in the Official Journal of the EU, entering into force on 27 June 2019.

Regulation (EU) 2019/881 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 17 April 2019 on ENISA (the European Union Agency for Cybersecurity) and on information and communications technology cybersecurity certification, deals with standards. It establishes a European cybersecurity certification framework for the development of schemes. The EC will adopt schemes concerning specific groups of ICT products, ICT services and ICT processes. These should be implemented and supervised by national cybersecurity certification authorities, with certificates issued under these schemes valid throughout the EU. The schemes will refer to standards.

The purpose of the schemes is to ensure that ICT products, ICT services and ICT processes that are certified as complying with specified requirements which aim to protect the availability, authenticity, integrity and confidentiality of stored, transmitted or processed data throughout their life cycle.

ANEC is already following the European standardisation activities on cybersecurity (in CEN-CENELEC JTC 13 and ETSI TC CYBER). We expect further work items to be adopted in the context of the Cybersecurity Act.


ANEC Services WG meeting

Our experts discussed standards work on horizontal services, tourism and related services; postal services and beauty salon services to name a few.

The meeting also reviewed the nature and application of requirements in standards versus recommendations in standards. The outcomes will be useful to our experts in their work in European and international committees.

Our thanks to Test-Achats for hosting the meeting.


New ISO work on the Sharing Economy

ANEC attended the first meeting of ISO TC 324 ‘Sharing economy’, held in Tokyo. The main purpose of the meeting was to frame the work for a “sharing economy” standard. A presentation was made by ANEC Representative, Antoine Champion, to give an overview of the European situation, and the advantages and disadvantages the sharing economy in Europe has presented to consumers so far. ANEC believes matters of particular concern to be Security and safety; Complaint handling systems and the Transparency of the platforms used by operators.



Traffic & Mobility

ANEC Traffic & Mobility WG meeting

On 27 & 28 May, the ANEC Traffic & Mobility WG met in Brussels for its annual meeting. Our experts discussed achievements and problems in standards work related to Vehicle passenger safety; Electromobility; Child safety, Urban ITS and Automated driving. Guest presentations were made by ETSC and BEUC.

The meeting included a workshop discussion on the mapping of current work and a view to future work. 

List of comments 2019

List of meetings 2019

For comments or if you wish to write an article for the ANEC Newsletter, please contact: Marijana ANTAROROVA (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.).