EFDA rises to the challenge 10 July 2024

The European Fastener Distributor Association (EFDA) is increasingly developing into a focal point for European fastener distribution, with its members being able to meet and exchange ideas more often than ever before in recent years.

New topics such as the Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism (CBAM) regulation are increasing the need for information and dialogue, and through webinars EFDA has been able to provide added value to many companies – with the good and pragmatic exchange between member organisations, and the companies, paying off for the entire European fastener distribution industry. In addition, EFDA has created the CBAM Working Group, set-up in December last year, which has also been able to produce very useful documents and assistance for members.

“Our members benefit from regular information from EFDA on trade policy measures from the European Commission, such as anti-dumping, or CBAM and other legal requirements,” points out Andreas Bertaggia, EFDA president. “This gives them not only expertise and security, but we can often provide the companies with a realistic scenario of what they need to prepare for in the coming weeks and months. The opinion of experts from the EFDA Task Force is certainly a better guide than rumours on the world markets.”

Andreas continues: “CBAM represents a major challenge for our industry. It is a very ambitious EU project, whose goal of tackling climate change we share, but which is not yet fully developed. Nine months into the transition period, it is obvious that CBAM was not developed for downstream products such as fasteners, but for the import of raw materials. In addition, importers of fasteners under CN Code 7318 are at a significant disadvantage compared to importers of comparable products and especially compared to fastener manufacturers in the EU. This will lead to a clear financial disadvantage, especially from 2026, when importers will have to purchase certificates for emissions. This discrimination must end. The best solution would be to remove fasteners from the scope of CBAM. The EU legislator’s decision to include fasteners in CBAM at the last moment was not well thought out.”

From the outset, EFDA has informed its members and companies about CBAM and the resulting obligations for importers, and its impact on the fastener trade, through webinars, guidelines and a regular information service. The EFDA Working Group has also created a template that suppliers outside the EU can use to provide its members with the required data for their quarterly reports. 

“The EFDA template is significantly leaner and less complex than the Commission’s template. Nevertheless, the response rate is still far from what would be required to successfully implement CBAM,” explains Andreas. “According to a survey of our members, only 12% of suppliers provide reasonably complete data – including concrete emission values. Without the use of default values even after 1st July 2024, our member companies will not be able to submit their quarterly reports. We have made our position clear to the European Commission.”

In order to support European fastener distributors in the implementation of CBAM, EFDA is also active outside the EU – supporting its partner associations in Asia and America so that suppliers there can fulfil the requirements of CBAM and provide EU importers with the necessary data. 

“We will do everything we can to support our members, and their member companies, in continuing their business successfully and we will lobby the EU to ensure that gross errors in CBAM are eliminated,” states Andreas. “The issues of sustainability and the increasing regulation of the supply chain, such as CBAM, are becoming an ever-greater challenge for both small and large companies in the fastener distribution industry. At EFDA we look to address these issues, inform our members at an early stage, get involved in legislative processes and support companies in implementing the requirements. Whether it’s the customer’s desire for a carbon footprint or the European Union’s obligations through CBAM, our member companies are rising to the challenge.“





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