Keeping Owner-Operators Informed on EU Regulatory Developments
IGI – The Global Wallcoverings Association
IGI, the Global Wallcoverings Association, is a global not-for-profit organisation with a mission to support wallcovering industry members by providing a forum for discussion, disseminating information, and representing the industry before government and standards bodies. A key role of IGI is involvement in the establishment and the promotion of industry standards.
Founded in 1950 and headquartered in Belgium, today around 85 IGI members across five continents represent the main players in the wallcovering industry, both manufacturers and suppliers.
Exempla partners have a long-standing relationship with IGI and have worked with the organisation in a variety of roles since 2006, including EU public policy, consulting, and event management.
Exempla was retained to keep IGI member companies informed in a timely and concise manner about developments in EU policy and legislation that may have an impact on their businesses.
In addition, Exempla advises IGI where necessary on its communications with the EU Institutions.
Prior to the start of the work, Exempla conducted an initial research phase which involved a comprehensive scan the EU regulatory landscape that affects IGI and mapped the relevant issues, stakeholders and decision makers to ensure an effective understanding of the issues.
Exempla continuously monitors developments in EU policy and legislation for IGI as it relates to wallcoverings. Topics followed include:
- chemicals regulation (REACH)
- waste management, recycling and circular economy,
- indoor air quality and volatile organic compounds,
- construction products regulation
- CE marking
- and international trade.
The list of topics is regularly reviewed and adapted according to IGI’s priorities. Some topics such as chemicals regulation are highly technical. Here, Exempla works in collaboration with the secretary general and IGI’s technical experts to assess relevance.
The potential business impact of EU regulations on the industry is substantial. Wallcoverings are complex products often consisting of paper coloured with synthetic inks and dyes and covered with a layer of vinyl to make them washable. Also, they often contain many chemicals such as adhesives, fire retardants and biocides that inhibit mould. This makes them difficult and costly to recycle. Advance knowledge of changes in regulations gives the industry time to adapt supply chains, research alternatives and change manufacturing processes. As projects are underway to make the product more circular, EU monitoring keeps the industry abreast of emerging EU-level policies. This has become even more important with The European Green Deal becoming the flagship policy of the current European Commission.
This collected information is disseminated to IGI members companies through a quarterly newsletter. The content is formatted for a readership of busy senior executives/owner-operators of member companies who need actionable information without unnecessary background or detail.
An e-alert is provided when urgent developments take place that cannot wait until the scheduled newsletter.
Exempla helps us to provide our members with relevant and timely insights into the issues that are at play at EU level, especially upcoming regulation that may impact the wallcoverings industry.
They are able to assess what developments are most important to our members’ businesses and present key take-aways in an easy to absorb, actionable format for busy owner-operators.
Géraldine de Limelette, Secretary general, IGI – The Global Wallcoverings Association