The Electrical and Electronic Equipment Act

Manufacturers assume product responsibility for take-back and disposal.

The aim is to avoid waste from electrical and electronic equipment in order to protect the environment or to reduce it through reuse and recycling. The law aims to extend the responsibility of producers for their EEE put on the market to the entire product life cycle of their equipment. It obliges producers, distributors or importers to contribute to the disposal costs of their equipment. Companies must take back and recycle their electrical equipment put on the market according to certain ecological standards.

The magical 65: Germany has set itself the goal of increasing the collection rate of electronic products to 65 per cent in 2019. In 2016, 43.1 per cent of the 45 per cent target was achieved.   

Elektro- und Elektronikgerätegesetz | weee full-service


What there is to know about the ElektroG

The ElektroG requires manufacturers to…

  • register electronic products and apply for a WEEE number before market launch.
  • …provide an insolvency-proof guarantee.
  • report the numbers sold at regular intervals.
  • …ensure that the products are disposed of in an environmentally compatible way.
  • …indicate their registration number on the products.
  • …fulfil their obligation to label products and inform private households.

The ElektroG defines a manufacturer as any natural or legal person who has offices in the respective member state and…

  • …manufactures electrical or electronic equipment in their own name/as their own brand.
  • …commissions the manufacture of electrical or electronic equipment in their own name/as their own brand.
  • …resells electrical or electronic equipment made by other manufacturers in their own name/as their own brand.
  • …brings electrical or electronic equipment to the market from abroad (importer).
  • …sells electrical or electronic equipment directly to users with the help of telecommunications technologies and is based in a different member state or outside the EU.

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2022 – Amendment | ElektroG3

The German ElektroG is currently being amended and a new version is expected to come into force in 2022.

2018 – Open Scope 

15 August 2018: Transition to so-called "Open Scope", using 6 categories. This means that more electronic devices fall under the ElektroG.

2016/17 – Transition period

1 July 2017: Changes in the retail take-back obligation:

  • Fines of up to 100,000 € for failure to meet retail take-back obligation
  • Specification of number of electrical devices that sellers and manufacturers must take back from consumers: 5 end-of-use products per type of Equipment
  • Fines of up to 10,000 € for companies that are obliged to take back equipment and fail to appoint a Waste Management Officer

24 July 2016: Retail industry obliged to take back equipment and indicate collection points (retail take-back obligation)
​​​24 April 2016: (Re)registration of companies without offices in Germany via authorised representative  
1 February 2016: Reassignment of electrical and electronic equipment to collection groups
24 January 2016: Obligation to register lamps and photovoltaic modules

2015 – Amendment | ElektroG 2

24 October 2015: The German ElektroG has been amended.

2005 – Enactment | ElektroG

24 March 2005: The ElektroG has come into force in Germany.

The Open Scope of the ElektroG

The scope of the ElektroG was expanded to a so-called Open Scope, so that the ElektroG now also covers additional electronic Equipment:

More about the Open Scope | ElektroG 2018


Current status in other EU countries

The Open Scope category is also being introduced in other European countries in line with the WEEE Directive 2012/19/EU. Since implementation varies from one EU country to the next, manufacturers of electrical equipment should find out in good time the current situation in the respective countries in which they operate. For example, several subcategories may be introduced as well as changes in the pricing system. It may also be necessary to register new products.

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