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     National Implementation of Eco-labelling
                   in Hungary
             Ministry of Environment and Water

                 Ankara, 22-23 March 2007

                         Andrea NÁM
                        head of section
Slayt 1

e1        eurotek; 22.03.2007
                Eco-labelling in Hungary

• Before accession to the EU
  The Hungarian environmental label was
  established by the Ministry of Environment and
  Regional Development

• After accession to the EU
  The national and the European systems are
  operated in parallel
            Objective of environmental-labelling in

• Improvement of environmental awareness of
  manufacturers, service providers and consumers

• Giving reliable information to consumers on the
  environmental characteristics of a product or a

• Decreasing environmental load of consumption
                   National environmental-labelling
• The “Hungarian Eco-labelling Organisation” (HELO) was
  established in 1994 by the Ministry of Environment and
  Regional Development

• The system was set up by using the German Blue Angel
  (1978) and the EU Eco-label scheme as examples

• Characteristics of the system : independent, neutral,
  involves the interested parties and the definition of criteria
  are set based on the life cycle analysis

• The objective of the Eco-labeling Organisation (HELO) is
  to promote manufacturers and trade organisations in
  producing and distributing environment-friendly products
  and to inform the consumers about the environmental
  characteristics of the products and services.
                         Legal background

• Decision of Hungarian Government No. 3325/1993. (3.
  Sept. 1993.) – on setting up an “Environmentally Friendly”
  product differentiation and certification system.

• Act LIII of 1995. on the General Rules of the Protection of
  the Environment – creates the legal basis of the system

• Decree of Minister for Environment and Regional
  Development No. 29/1997. (VIII. 29.) amended by the
  decree of the Minister for Environment and Water No.
  9/2004. (V.25) –regulates the operation of the system
                   Institutional background

Placement of the non profit organisation (HELO)
offices in Budapest, Hungary
                     1 director
                     2 senior counsellors
                     2 administrative/financial
       experienced in the national scheme
Experts contracted by HELO
                         Income of HELO

• Yearly contribution from Ministry of Environment and

• Fees payed by the users of the eco-labels

• Others
                     in the National Scheme

  with considerable environmental advantage
  considering the whole life cycle

Excluded: food products, beverages, pharmaceuticals,
  medical products for professionals
               in the National Scheme

                 by any Stakeholder
                      to HELO

                     Decision of the
                 Assessment Committee

                      Draft criteria
               consulted with the Ministry

                     Decision of the

                 Assessment Committee              refusa
    Publishing the criteria         Modification   l
          by HELO                   by experts
               Awarding the national Eco-label
                  in the National Scheme

                     Application to HELO


                        Decision of the
                    Assessment Committee
acceptance                                        refusal
     Minister of Environment              HELO
        awards the label           informs the applicant

   contract with the applicant
     publication of award

    Applicant uses the label
       pays annual fee
               Involvement of stakeholders

• Assessment Committee of the National Scheme
  with the representation of
            competent ministries,
            scientific, manufacturing, trading,
            consumer and environmentalist
                Type of criteria in Hungary

• 51 criteria

Fridges, construction materials, shopping bags, fire
  extinguishers, paper products etc.
                   Usage of the national label

• Registered logo at the Hungarian Patent Office

• Logo can be used on the product, advertisements, leaflets

• Length of a contract for the use of the logo - until the
  expiry of the product group criteria (max. 5 years)

• Contract can be extended/renewed if product group
  criteria remain unchanged, if not, new application needed
                Eco-labelling in Hungary

The Hungarian Eco-label -Chestnut oak tree

• The application fees are uniform for both labels
  (approx. 600 Euro + VAT)

• The fee for using the eco-label is calculated
  based on the annual sales of the labelled product
  (For EU labels it is 0.15% of the annual sales, for
  Hungarian labels it is 0.2% of the annual sales).

• 25% reduction for SMSs and applicants having
  ISO 14001 and/or EMAS (cumulative)
      The Flower,
the eco-label of the EU
                                   European eco-labels

EU Flower   Nordic Swan         Austria         France

Germany           Netherlands    Spain     Sweden
                                 Central and Eastern Europe

Croatia   Poland               Czech Republic

           Slovakia   Latvia
           Compatibility of national and EU criteria

• Since accession only those criteria are elaborated
  for which no EU criteria are available

• If criteria already existed those were harmonised
  on a case by case basis

• If a product complies with the EU scheme the
  national label can also be awarded on request
           Compatibility of national and EU criteria (2)

• The two systems are operated in parallel

• The national eco-labelling system is more flexible,
  can take into consideration national
  characteristics and priorities

• The elaboration of national criteria are quicker

• The steps to be followed when awarding the label
  are similar
                         Number of Award Criteria and
                        Awarded Contracts in the EU eco-
                                Label scheme

350                                            336   1997
300                                          279     1998
250                                      217         2000
200                                                  2001
150                                                  2002
                                    91               2003
50                      25   253036
      6 121717 19212224
              17                                     2005
 0                                                   2006
                         Number of Award Criteria and Awarded
                           in the Hungarian National Scheme

120                                                                                      1994
100                                                                                      1996
                                                                         80 82           1997
80                                                                                       1998
                                                                      63                 1999
60                                        49 51                  54                      2000
                                   4245                                                  2001
                              36                                36
40                        3333                                                           2002
                     2832                                  27 31
                24                                                                       2003
20        10                                              15                             2004
      5                                               5                                  2005
 0                                                                                       2006
              Awarded Eco-labels by Company

Nordic Swan               > 1200 companies
 (Sweden 681, Denmark 294)
Germany           > 700
EU Flower         > 350
Netherlands       > 180
France            > 90
Czech Republic    > 73
Austria           > 59
Hungary           > 18
             Experiences concerning textiles and

• Bed mattresses – national eco-label

• Hotel – EU eco-label
Competitor of the label is the award of the tourist
             Operation of the EU eco-labelling
                        system (1)

• Designation of the Competent Body (gov. Decree
  in 2003) :
    CB is the Ministry of Environment and Water
                with the involvement
   of the Hungarian Eco-labelling Organisation
           the Assessment Committee
              Operation of the EU eco-labelling
                         system (2)

Responsibilities of HELO

• Information of stakeholders and public

• Managing the assessment procedure

• Participating in European Union Eco-Labelling
  Board (EUEB)
               Operation of the EU eco-labelling
                          system (3)

Responsibilities of the Ministry of Environment and

• Providing legal, strategic and financial conditions

• Decision on awarding the label

• Participation in EUEB

• Voting in the Regulatory Committee
                   Assessment procedure

• Accepting applications and fees (HELO)
• Assessing of product (HELO)
• Consultation with relevant competent bodies
• Proposal to awarding the label (HELO)
• Decision on awarding the label (Ministry)
• Contracting (HELO)
• Announcement to EU and public (HELO)
• Monitoring compliance (HELO)
                       Fees in details

• Application fee       150 000 HUF (~600 Euro)
     reductions: for SMS-s              25 %
            for developing countries    25 %
• Annual fee            0.15 %
     min. 120 000, max. 6.5 mill. HUF
     reductions: for SMS-s              25 %
            for developing countries    25 %
            for EMAS or ISO 14001       15 %
     cumulative,                   max. 50 %
             Advantages of the eco-label holders

• Cost efficient production – less energy, water, raw
  materials used, less waste generated

• Might generate more income

• Less advertising costs

• Advantages provided by law (e.g.. tax and charge
  reductions, public procurement)

• Lack of interest (no subsidies)

• Low public awareness (few labelled products on
  the market)

• Competition with misleading labels

• Misleading approach (expensive, label on one
  product downgrades the other products of a
  company, EMS is enough)

• www.
• www.kö
Thank you!