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ENERGY BRIEFING:Photovoltaic modules in Germany: urgent need to act in order to avoid warning letters

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Germany

The briefing provides information about the revised German Electrical and Electronics Equipment Act.

Based on the revised German Electrical and Electronics Equipment Act ("Elektro- und Elektronikger√§tegesetz", or "ElektroG"), inter alia photovoltaic modules are now generally categorized as electrical devices. Therefore, as of the coming into effect of said act producers of photovoltaic modules have to fulfil the registration requirements with the competent foundation, the "Stiftung ear". The respective grace period for such registration ended on 31 January 2016. Any marketing and supply of products of unregistered producers – either by the producers themselves or also by suppliers – are prohibited starting from 1 February 2016.

The omission of such registration implies the risk of injunctive relief procedures by competitors. Particularly taking into consideration a tendency of an increasing use of such approach in order to stop competitors from selling/marketing products on the German market – further to any possible authority actions – such registration requirements should urgently be fulfilled. In addition, companies possibly concerned should prepare themselves regarding potential further steps in case of receipt of a warning letter.

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