Europe launches an investigation into the Saudi Quality Mark


The European Commission has launched an examination procedure against Saudi Arabia on technical requirements affecting ceramic tile imports.

On 24 June, the European Commission initiated an examination procedure against Saudi Arabia regarding two technical regulations applied by the Kingdom to ceramic tile imports.

The European Commission’s action followed a complaint lodged by the European ceramic industry association Cerame-Unie on 23 April 2020 pursuant to Regulation 2015/1843 on Trade Barriers (TBR) and regarding the obligatory Saudi Quality Mark (SASO Quality Mark) imposed by Saudi Arabia. Since its implementation in September 2019, the SASO Quality Mark has seriously penalised access for European ceramic exporters to the Saudi Arabian market, leading to an average monthly loss of about 15 million euros.

Cerame-Unie’s President Alain Delcourt stressed the importance of the Commission’s decision to launch the investigation procedure, as it “reinforces its commitment to safeguarding free trade, to making sure European SMEs fully benefit from international trade and to continue strengthening trade policy instruments, particularly necessary in times of rising protectionism and global economic crisis”.