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Technical Requirements under the Electrical Appliances and Materials Safety Act were RevisedTo Define Performance-based Descriptions of the Technical Requirements

The Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) entirely revised the Ordinance Specifying the Technical Requirements for Electrical Appliances under the Electrical Appliances and Materials Safety Act, and promulgated it on Monday, July 1, 2013.

The ordinance specifies the technical requirements for electrical appliances, aiming to prevent the occurrence of hazards and damage caused by such appliances. METI has revised the ordinance to define performance-based descriptions of the technical requirements, which specify the various types of safety performance that electrical appliances should satisfy.

1. Outline of the revision

The existing technical requirements of the Electrical Appliances and Materials Safety Act provide specification-based descriptions, in which the government defines detailed specifications including sizes and shapes, for each product. METI has revised the related ordinance so as to change the specification-based descriptions into performance-based descriptions in which safety performance parameters that electrical appliances should satisfy, including protection against electrification and retaining of insulation performance, are specified, and it also promulgated the revised ordinance.

Specifically, METI organized safety performance parameters that the existing technical requirements require for all of the regulated 457 products, and specified the following technical matters that are essential for securing the safety of electrical appliances (for details, see the Appendix(PDF:12KB) PDF File).

Safety principles (5 categories)

  • Securing safety functions in the designing process;
  • Retaining safety functions during in-service periods;
  • Safety designs taking consideration of users and locations of use, etc.

Protection against hazards (11 categories)

  • Protection against electric shocks;
  • Retaining insulation performance;
  • Protection against fire hazards;
  • Preventing users from being burned;
  • Preventing harm caused by mechanical hazards; etc.

The revision of the technical requirements allows businesses to enhance the degree of freedom for designing products since it is only necessary for them to satisfy the prescribed safety performances, rather than to comply with the predetermined specification-based descriptions, such as sizes and shapes. As a result, such businesses will be able to develop products in a smooth and well-focused manner.

The government will continue to provide the existing specification-based descriptions of the technical requirements as indications according to which businesses are able to satisfy the performance-based descriptions of the technical requirements. However, in the future, it plans to proactively utilize the JIS (Japanese Industrial Standards) that are flexibly revised by reflecting state-of-the-art technology and international regulatory trends, aiming to promote the development and distribution of products with an eye on the global market.

2. Date of the promulgation and enforcement

Promulgation:
Monday, July 1, 2013
Enforcement:
Wednesday, January 1, 2014

3. Raising public awareness of the revision

METI will hold explanatory meetings across Japan and endeavor to raise public awareness of the revision.

For the related information on the revision, visit the following website. For the details of the explanatory meetings, METI will post information on its website in sequence immediately after they are decided.

Release Date

July 1, 2013

Division in Charge

Product Safety Division, Distribution and Industrial Safety Policy Group

 
Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry
1-3-1 Kasumigaseki, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 100-8901, Japan Tel: +81-(0)3-3501-1511
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