The EU regulation harmonization and the story of lawnmower decibel limits

An article in the Financial Times titled “Why Europe needs cross-border lawnmower regulations” (October 16, 2013) describes a law setting the maximum noise level generated by lawn mowers. The limits were in response to German laws demanding lower decibel levels that kept out the imports of British lawnmowers that had higher decibel levels. The proposed rules set a level playing field that helped British lawnmower manufacturers access German markets. The upshot of this story is that within the European Union, opening up markets really requires more regulation to streamline individual country level rules across the region. These common standards will them enable more efficient supply chains and thus more competition across the region. But will the setting of these common standards reduce the diversity of products being manufactured and thus decrease the global competitiveness of firms in the region ? Will the choice of the common standard require moving to the tightest standard or the loosest standard – thus requiring a choice of winners and losers at a central level ? Will the common standards make it easier for global competitors to enter the market, thus decreasing the competitiveness of European manufacturers ?

About aviyer2010

Professor
This entry was posted in Global Contexts, Operations Management, Supply Chain Issues and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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