Mutual recognition

Mutual recognition

Mutual recognition means that a national standard in one country – for example regarding product specifications is valid in all.

Instead of making standards within the EU consistent (harmonisation) by imposing a common, cross-EU law, the EU often uses the method of "mutual recognition" of standards.

The lowest member state standard can then be valid everywhere and undermine higher standards in other countries. This may then force everyone to agree to a compromise on cross-EU standards that they would have otherwise not accepted. 


This method can also be seen as an efficient and rapid way to form a single market without waiting for long negotiations between states over the harmonisation of national laws.

The Lisbon Treaty chapter on Home and Justice Affairs introduces mutual recognition of judgments. 


See also Harmonisation

Cassis de Dijon.