Market surveillance and the chain of control of products which enter the market is a pillar of quality infrastructure. Since its establishment in 2003, the Advisory Group on Market Surveillance (MARS) brings together all players involved (public authorities, manufacturers, retailers, importers, consumers, etc.) to increase transparency and attract attention to the role and responsibilities of public authorities in the chain of control. It has developed comprehensive guidance and serves as a forum of best practice and development of recommendation guidelines.
Market surveillance is a set of activities by designated authorities to ensure that products comply with mandatory requirements and do not endanger any aspect of public interest. This involves proper calibration of machinery and measurements (metrology) as well as actively engaging with other border control agencies such as customs. MARS actively brings together member States to discuss best practice for countering sub-standard and counterfeit goods.
No country benefits from counterfeits. The WP.6 Advisory Group on Market Surveillance (MARS) is organizing a webinar on 21 February 14:00-16:30 on how market surveillance agencies can play a role in the combat against counterfeits. This reflects the 2007 Recommendation M on the topic and will provide an opportunity to take stock of its implementation and any eventual updates. More available on the event website.
An e-learning training on market surveillance is now available on the UNECE-WP.6 learnQI portal. This training targets a beginner level knowledge on market surveillances and provides the basis to understand these procedures.
Symbol/Title Issued date ENG FRE RUS
Recommendation M on Use of Market Surveillance Infrastructure as a Complementary Means to Protect Consumers and Users against Counterfeit Goods
Recommendation N on Good Market Surveillance Policies and Practices
Recommendation S on Applying Predictive Risk Management Tools for Targeted Market Surveillance
Template for exchanging information between Market Surveillance Agencies
Glossary of Market Surveillance Terms
Revised Glossary of Market Surveillance Terms
Market Surveillance in the ECE Region
The Advisory Group on Market Surveillance (MARS) was established in 2003, resulting from the UNECE International Forum on Market Surveillance (29 October 2002, Geneva).
Market players such as public authorities, manufacturers, retailers, importers, and consumers/users need transparent rules of play. Consistent and effective procedures in the field of the protection of consumers and workers are a precondition to address this concern. Improved coordination and creation of best practices for market surveillance authorities are of great importance. Such cooperation and coordination are essential for the good functioning of both national markets and for the ECE region at large in order to eliminate distortion of competition and to protect consumers. Transparent and consistent best practices will also contribute to the facilitation of international trade.
The general task of the Advisory Group on Market Surveillance (MARS Group) is to contribute to the activities of the Working Party on Regulatory Cooperation and Standardization Policies (WP.6) aimed at creating conditions conducive to the development and promotion of global trade and economic cooperation.
Impact text forthcoming
Official meetings of the Advisory Group on Market Surveillance (MARS)
- 21st MARS Group meeting, 26 May 2023, Virtual meeting
- 20th MARS Group meeting, 10 June 2022, Virtual meeting
- 19th MARS Group meeting, 13 July 2021, Virtual meeting
- Joint MARS and GRM Groups meeting, 11 - 12 June 2020, Virtual meeting
- 17th MARS Group meeting, 8 - 9 July 2019, Moscow, Russian Federation
- 16th MARS Group meeting, 26 - 27 June 2018, Geneva, Switzerland
- 15th MARS Group meeting, 11 - 12 September 2017, Stockholm, Sweden
- 14th MARS Group meeting, 26 - 27 September 2016, Geneva, Switzerland
- 13th MARS Group meeting, 24 - 25 June 2015, Prague, Czech Republic
- 12th MARS Group meeting, 23 - 25 April 2014, Belgrade, Republic of Serbia
- 11th MARS Group meeting, 25 - 27 September 2013, Prague, Czech Republic
- 10th MARS Group meeting, 12 - 14 September 2012, Bratislava, Slovakia
- 9th MARS Group meeting, 13 - 15 September 2011, Bratislava, Slovakia
- 8th MARS Group meeting, 6 - 8 October 2010, Bratislava, Slovakia
- 7th MARS Group meeting, 8 - 10 October 2009, Bratislava, Slovakia
- 6th MARS Group meeting, 2 - 4 October 2008, Bratislava, Slovakia
- 5th MARS Group meeting, 10 - 13 October 2007, Bratislava, Slovakia
- 4th MARS Group meeting, 24 - 26 September 2006, Bratislava, Slovakia
- 3rd MARS Group meeting, 4 April 2005, Strbske Pleso, Slovakia
- 2nd MARS Group meeting, 5 - 6 April 2004, Strbske Pleso, Slovakia, ("Market Surveillance - a Common Strategy of the UNECE - EU under the Regulatory Convergence")
- 1st MARS meeting, 8 - 9 September 2003, Piestany, Slovakia, (UNECE workshop “Market Surveillance in the context of the “wider Europe”: current approaches and future directions“)
Other events related to market surveillance organized by WP.6
- International Conference on “Safer products and workplaces, safer communities” 25 November 2014, Geneva, Switzerland
- Panel Session - “Market Surveillance Model Initiative”, 4 November 2008, Geneva
- Second International Forum on Market Surveillance and Consumer Protection, 24-25 October 2005, Geneva, Switzerland
- First International Forum on Market Surveillance, 22 October 2002, Geneva, Switzerland
- Policies and Procedures
Symbol / title Issued date ENG FRE RUS
ECE/CTCS/2021/10 Annex 1
Terms of reference of the Advisory Group on Market Surveillance (MARS Group)