A construction product means any product or kit which is produced and placed on the market for incorporation in a permanent manner in construction works or parts thereof and the performance of which has an effect on the performance of the construction works with respect to the basic requirements for construction works.
The conditions for the placing or making available on the market of construction products are determined by the Regulation (EU) No 305/2011 of the European Parliament and of the Council as of 9 March 2011 laying down harmonised conditions for the marketing of construction products and repealing Council Directive 89/106/EEC (hereinafter referred to as the “Regulation) and the Construction Products Act. The Regulation lays down conditions for the placing or making available on the market of construction products, subject to harmonised European requirements. The Construction Products Act determines the requirements for construction products without harmonised European technical specifications, and the procedure for determining the authorities for Slovenian technical approvals and the procedure for awarding Slovenian technical approvals. It also determines the procedure for determining the authorities included in the assessment procedures and the verification of constancy of performance of the construction product and other content, connected to the implementation of the Regulation. It also regulates the publication of Slovenian standards, the declaration of performance, instructions and safety information. The procedure for determining and monitoring the authorities for the assessment and verification of constancy of performance is also regulated. The act determines that the ministry, competent for the market, shall be competent for notifying the authorities of the assessment and verification of constancy of performance.
Harmonised technical specifications
Harmonised European technical specifications for products determine uniform methods for assessing and verifying characteristics in connection to the essential characteristics of construction products that are required in member states and that enable construction works to fulfil the seven basic requirements as per the Regulation. The basis for placement on the market are European harmonised standards; if they cannot be prepared or if the product deviates from the harmonised standard, a European Technical Assessment can be issued for the product, which is prepared on the basis of the European Assessment Document.
Harmonised European technical specifications are:
- Harmonised European Standards, prepared by European standardisation organisations, the European Commission publishes their reference in the Official Journal of the European Union;
- European Assessment Document (EAD) is the basis for European Technical Assessment (ETA) and is prepared by the organisation of authorities for technical assessment for products not included under harmonised European standards.
Declaration of performance and construction product labelling
If a construction product is included in the harmonised European standard or applies to the issued European Technical Assessment, the manufacturer shall prepare a declaration of performance for the product when it is placed on the market. By issuing a declaration of performance, the manufacturer shall assume responsibility for the performance of the construction product with the indicated characteristics. The content of the declaration is generally determined by the Regulation, but the information that must be indicated in the declaration is further explained in the appendix of the harmonised standard or in the appropriate section of the European Assessment Document. The declaration of performance must contain all essential characteristics of the construction product as determined in the harmonised standard of the European Assessment Document. The Regulation determines that performance is also indicated for at least one of the essential characteristics that are important for the intended use. For the listed essential characteristics for which no performance is declared, the letters ‘NPD’ (No Performance Determined) should be used. When necessary, information on the content of hazardous substances in the construction product should be indicated by the manufacturer. A copy of the declaration of performance for each product on the market shall be submitted on paper or via electronic means. A declaration of performance must be prepared, and the product must be marked with the CE label, solely under the responsibility of the manufacturer, for each construction product subject to European harmonised standard or when the manufacturer obtains the European Technical Assessment.
The options for simplifying procedures in connection to assessment of performance are also envisaged:
- without testing or without further testing;
- exchange of type testing results or
- disseminating the type testing results.
Additional procedure simplification is possible only when the manufacturer is a micro company or when it involves products that have been manufactured individually by order in non-serial production on the basis of a special order or installed in an individual construction work. In such cases, the authority notified for product certification must be included when the assessment and the verification of constancy of performance are required 1 + or 1.
The declaration of performance, instructions and safety information for a construction product must be provided in the Slovenian language.
Notified bodies and technical assessment bodies
Notified bodies (NB) are authorities included in the procedures of assessment and verification of constancy of performance of construction products and can include product certification authorities, production control certification authorities or testing laboratories. Bodies are determined by member states and then notified to the European Commission and member states. Notified bodies must cooperate in the European Group of Notified Bodies. Together with authorities from other countries, this group considers practical problems in connection to the implementation of Regulation requirements. When a body is notified for tasks within the scope of a harmonised technical specification that applies for a certain product, the manufacturer can include it in the assessment and verification of constancy of performance procedure. The manufacturer can choose any notified body in the European Economic Area. Notified bodies must monitor the development of harmonised technical specifications and all changes in the area of products for which they have been notified. They must also monitor the work of the Group of Notified Bodies in areas for which they have been notified. Notified bodies shall constantly prove their qualification for the areas and procedures for which they have been notified. Bodies can also be notified for other tasks:
- assessment of performance of the product on the basis of testing;
- factory control of production certification;
- product certification.
Technical A Technical Assessment Body (TAB) is determined for the products for which there are no harmonised standards. For these products, the manufacturer can acquire the European Technical Assessment on the basis of the European Assessment Document. Member states notify the name and address of the Technical Assessment Body to the European Commission and other member states. Technical Assessment Bodies carry out the assessment of products and issue the European Technical Assessment only in those areas of construction products for which they have been appointed.
The Assessment and Verification of Constancy of Performance system (AVCP) indicates the degree of involvement of a notified body in the assessment and verification of constancy of performance. The system has been determined by the European Commission together with member states and was published as a decision in the Official Journal of the EU.
The role of the notified body in various AVCP systems:
- System 1+: Product certification including the issue of the certificate of constancy of performance on the basis of the determination of product type, initial review of production plant and factory production control, permanent control and inspection sample testing;
- System 1: Product certification including the issue of the certificate of constancy of performance on the basis of the determination of product type, initial review of production plant and factory production control and permanent control;
- System 2+: Factory production control including the issue of the factory production control conformity certificate and permanent supervision;
- System 3: Assessment of performance on the basis of testing, calculation, tabulated values or descriptive documentation;
- System 4: The manufacturer implements all tasks.
If no harmonised technical specification exists for a construction product, the manufacturer must prove its performance, connected to essential characteristics, referring to the basic requirements for construction works and within its intended use on the basis of valid Slovenian national standards, Slovenian Technical Approval or other publicly accessible technical specifications that present the status of technology. In this case, the manufacturer shall issue a declaration of performance in the Slovenian language containing the following data:
- name and address of the manufacturer;
- construction product type mark;
- valid technical specification which is the basis for determining performance;
- intended use;
- performance in connection to essential characteristics of the construction product;
- name of the authority included in the procedure of assessment and verification of constancy of performance and the number of the testing report or certificate;
- name, position and signature of the person authorised to sign the declaration of performance; and
- place and date of issue of the declaration of performance.
With its issue the manufacturer shall assume responsibility for performance of the construction product with the indicated characteristics. When necessary, information on the content of hazardous substances in the construction product should be indicated by the manufacturer. By enabling the accessibility of the construction product in the market, the manufacturer shall also attach instructions and safety information in the Slovenian language to the product. For assessing product performance, the manufacturer shall use a system for the assessment and verification of constancy of construction product performance in accordance with one of the systems as per the Regulation, meaning that the system of assessment and verification of constancy of performance and the European Commission decisions on the procedures of approving the conformity of construction products are considered.
Procedure simplification is possible only in very limited cases involving products that are manufactured individually or by order via non-serial production on the basis of a special order and installed in individual construction works in accordance with the valid national regulations and under the supervision of appropriate responsible persons or when the construction product is produced at the construction site for the installation in the construction works in accordance with the valid national rules and under the supervision of appropriate responsible persons or when the construction product is produced traditionally or in a way that fulfils the conditions of monumental heritage, in an industrial procedure, for an appropriate renovation of construction works, officially protected as part of the protected environment, or due to its special architectural or historical significance in accordance with national rules.
Authorities for Slovenian Technical Consent
The Slovenian technical consent shall be awarded upon the request of the manufacturer and be based on investigations, tests or an assessment by referring to appropriate basic requirements for construction works. The Slovenian Technical Consent shall be awarded to the manufacturer by the authority competent for the Slovenian Technical Consent.
Two authorities carry the licence for an authority for Slovenian Technical Consent on the basis of the Construction Products Act:
- Zavod za gradbeništvo Slovenije (Construction National Building and Civil Engineering Institute), Dimičeva 12, 1000 Ljubljana. The authority grants Slovenian Technical Consents for all construction products for which no harmonised technical specifications as per item 10 of paragraph 1 of Article 2 of the Regulation exist.
- IGMAT d.d., Zadobrovška cesta 4, 1260 Ljubljana-Polje. The authority grants Slovenian Technical Consents for the following construction products for which no harmonised technical specifications as per item 10 of paragraph 1 of Article 2 of the Regulation exist:
- products for wastewater engineering systems, as determined in European Commission Decision No 97/464/EC,
- products not in contact with drinking water, as determined in European Commission Decision No 99/472/EC,
- masonry and related products, as determined in European Commission Decision No 97/740/EC,
- precast normal/lightweight/autoclaved aerated concrete products, as determined in European Commission Decision No 99/94/EC,
- construction metal elements products and ancillary products, as determined in European Commission Decision No 98/214/EC,
- roof coverings, roof lights and ancillary products, as determined in European Commission Decision No 98/436/EC,
- thermal insulation products, as determined in European Commission Decision No 1999/91/EC,
- products related to concrete, mortar and grout, as determined in European Commission Decision No 99/469/EC,
- polymer materials used to compensate traditional fixtures in concrete constructions in reconstructions or rehabilitation of engineering objects, to which the European Commission Decision No 97/597/EC is applied.
Considering the principles of mutual recognition in construction products
It is considered that products which are legally marketed in other EU member states, the European Economic Area and the Republic of Turkey, if they are produced in accordance with national legislation that ensures an equal level of public interest protection as is determined in the legislation of the Republic of Slovenia, fulfil the legal requirements and can be placed on the market. Therefore, there is no basis to require additional tests or other procedures for confirming conformity for such products in the Republic of Slovenia.
The competent supervision authorities can demand additional tests only in the event of a certain characteristic of a product not being tested in accordance with the requirements of legislation and executive acts that are based on referring to an appropriate legal act. It must be emphasised that the indicated characteristics of construction products must be such that the construction products will at the place of installation apply to regulations for construction, project requirements and fulfil the essential requirements for construction objects (e. g. considering earthquake burden when a product is installed in an object in an earthquake area).