What does the ElektroG say?
According to the Electrical and Electronic Equipment Act (ElektroG), any producer and/or retailer wishing to place electronic equipment on the German market must first register with stiftung ear. Each registration must specify the brand and the type of equipment to be sold. If the registration is successful, the producer/authorised representative will receive a unique WEEE registration number. This process can take between 6–10 weeks. Future registrations for other types of equipment can use the same WEEE registration number.
Registration with stiftung ear is based on the EU Directive on Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE), which has been transposed into German law by the ElektroG. The WEEE Directive regulates the distribution, return and proper disposal of waste electrical and electronic equipment within the EU. We can help you meet your legal obligations.
Who is responsible, or rather, who is the initial distributor according to the ElektroG?
According to the ElektroG, “initial distribution” means placing electrical and electronic equipment (EEE) on the German market for the first time.
You are considered an initial distributor
- if you produce, design or have other companies produce equipment under your name and brand, and place it on the market for the first time (producers),
- if you place equipment from another producer on the market for the first time under your name or brand,
- if you place foreign equipment on the German market (importer),
- or if you are based outside Germany and are offering your equipment via distance sales (online shops and mail-order companies).
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The new Electrical and Electronic Equipment Act has been in force since 2022.
Here are the most important changes at a glance.
The government has amended the ElektroG. One of the objectives is to achieve a minimum collection rate of 65% for WEEE as required by the EU. The amendment to the Electrical and Electronic Equipment Act imposes important new obligations on online retailers, and for the first time, on online marketplace operators.
A summary of all the changes can be found here.
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What kind of equipment is subject to the ElektroG?
Wie Kühlschränke, Gefrierschränke
Bildschirme, Monitore und Geräte, die Bildschirme mit einer Oberfläche von mehr als 100cm² enthalten
Wie Fernseher, Monitore, Tablets, Notebooks
Wie Energiesparlampen, LED-Leuchtmittel, Gasentladungslampen
Geräte, bei denen mindestens eine der äußeren Abmessungen mehr als 50 cm beträgt (Großgeräte)
Wie Spülmaschinen, Waschmaschinen, Dunstabzugshauben, Backöfen, Elektrofahrräder ohne Typzulassung, Elektrische Rudergeräte
Geräte, bei denen keine der äußeren Abmessungen mehr als 50 cm beträgt (Kleingeräte)
Wie Rasierapparate, Spielzeug, kleine Unterhaltungselektronik, Leuchten, Messgeräte, Werkzeuge
Kleine Geräte der Informations- und Telekommunikationstechnik, bei denen keine der äußeren Abmessungen mehr als 50 cm beträgt
Wie Mobiltelefone, Router, PCs, Drucker
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WEEE stands for waste electrical and electronic equipment. The underlying directive is the European Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Directive.
Anyone who places EEE on the German market must have a WEEE registration number, specifically producers, online retailers, importers and anyone who places goods on the market via marketplaces. If you do not have an office in Germany, you must appoint an authorised representative to register.
WEEE stands for waste electrical and electronic equipment. The WEEE registration number is proof of compliance with the legal obligations (EPR) for waste electrical and electronic equipment.
For information on fees, please refer to stiftungs ear’s overview of fees.
In 2018, the scope of the WEEE Directive was extended to cover all electrical and electronic equipment in six categories: Heat exchangers, screens, lamps, large equipment, small equipment and small equipment for information and telecommunication technology.
The Electrical and Electronic Equipment Act (ElektroG) transposes the European WEEE Directive into German law. It regulates the placing on the market, take-back and disposal of electrical and electronic equipment, amongst other things.
The law aims to
- make electrical and electronic equipment less harmful to the environment;
- avoid and reduce electrical and electronic waste through re-use and recovery;
- dispose of non-recoverable residual waste in an environmentally friendly manner.
In addition to “traditional” electrical and electronic equipment, the ElektroG also applies to products with electrical and electronic components, such as furniture, clothing and lifestyle products.
The law covers the following:
Electrical and electronic equipment:
Equipment designed for use with a voltage rating of less than 1,000 volts AC and 1,500 volts DC that
a) depends on electric currents or electromagnetic fields in order to work properly, or
b) generates, transmits or measures electric currents or electromagnetic fields.
It is the responsibility of stiftung ear to determine whether EEE is subject to the German Electrical and Electronic Equipment Act. You can request stiftung ear to check whether a product falls within the scope of the ElektroG, whether it qualifies for an exemption and which product category it falls into (usually for a fee).