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Product Regulation & Liability

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According to a parliamentary report dated 14 October 2021, shortages of health products are on the rise. The number of medicines of major therapeutic interest declared out of supply has increased from 404 in 2013 to 1,499 in 2019. As for medical devices, the French Health Agency estimates that, as of 8 October 2021, one essential medical device is currently subject to supply difficulties and has been for more than a month, which jeopardizes the continuity of patients’ care.

For a long time in Poland, governmental bodies did not comment on the legal framework applicable to cooperation with influencers, such as the proper tagging of posts or the liability for sponsored content. The principles of cooperation could only be assessed on the basis of general interpretations of the existing legal regulations. However, in recent weeks the Polish Office for Competition and Consumer Protection has taken steps to organize the sponsored online content market, as it found that much of the commercial content on influencer profiles on social media is either not marked as advertising at all or is insufficiently marked.

On 2 November 2021, the Ministry of Commerce of China officially released the revised Catalogue of Technologies Subject to Import Prohibition and Restriction, effective immediately, which identifies, among others, foreign “data encryption technology employing a key length greater than 256 bits” as a technology that requires import permit when transferred to a Chinese party.

On 31 October 2021, the EU and US issued a joint statement announcing that they had reached an agreement to end their dispute over steel and aluminum tariffs. This agreement removes the US “Section 232” tariffs on imports of EU steel and aluminium, imposed during the Trump administration, whilst the EU has agreed to suspend additional duties imposed on US goods in retaliation. Both sides have also agreed to suspend disputes initiated against each other at the WTO in relation to the tariffs.

The Communications and Multimedia Content Forum of Malaysia has issued a public consultation paper titled “Revamp of the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Content Code”, proposing a number of changes to the prohibitions, restrictions and requirements on electronic content, particularly in relation to advertising, as well as broader implications for online service providers and online marketplace operators. The closing date for submission of feedback to the Content Forum is 10 December 2021.

This week’s discussion in the ‘This Week in Government Enforcement’ series will cover the following:
• Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco on corporate enforcement priorities under the Biden Administration
• The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is targeting big tech
o What do they want and why do they want it?
o How should tech firms prepare, whether they receive a request from CFPB or not?

In April, Royal Decree-Law 7 of 27 April 2021 was passed. It introduced major amendments to Royal Legislative Decree 1 of 16 November 2007, approving the revised text of the General Consumer and User Protection Act and other supplementary acts, which we analysed in our May newsletter.