What's In It for Me?

by Gordon L. Jaynes, Partner; Whitman & Ranson Law Firm, United Kingdom,

Serial Information: Worldwide Projects, 1993, Vol. 1, Issue 1, Pg. 12-15

Document Type: Feature article

Abstract: The construction industry of the European Community (EC), which accounts for about 10 percent of the EC's gross domestic product, or nearly US $550 billion, commands about 43 percent of the world's export market for construction. As the EC creates a single market in construction and engineering as part of its Project 1992, its laws, codes and other features are increasingly important outside as well as inside western Europe. Five areas are of particular interest to professionals in what the EC calls third countries, those outside the Community: professional liability, professional qualifications, public procurement, Eurocodes and Eurostandards, and health and safety. Among the developments: a draft EC directive specifies liability for buildings (as opposed to civil works) and creates an EC-wide warranty for building buildings and private residential buildings. A 1991 directive aims to ensure that member states recognize or take into account EC nationals' qualifications, though members implementation of this rule varies. A directive on public procurement, coming into force in July 1993, governs the award of service contracts over the equivalent of US $275,000 (except in the case of utilities, which will be regulated by a separate rule). EC-wide codes and standards are slowly coming into existence to replace national versions. These developments and others will have a profound effect on professionals from third countries.

Subject Headings: Europe | Construction industry | Liability | Professional development | Standards and codes |

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