Published in China News on 09.12.2020

Introduction: CCC Certification in China

In order to sell products commercially on the Chinese market, many products require mandatory CCC certification.
The requirement and the certification itself are comparable with the CE marking in the European Economic Area (EEA), both certifications indicate that the product fulfills all health and safety requirements.

Product types for which such certification is required:

  • Electric wires and cables
  • switches for circuits and fuses
  • switches for electric circuits, built-in protection and connection devices
  • small motors
  • Electric tools
  • welding machines
  • Electrical devices for domestic use
  • Audio and video products
  • illumination devices
  • motor vehicle parts and safety components
  • motor vehicle tires
  • safety glass
  • Telecommunications End Products
  • toys
  • Fire protection products

The certification process begins with the submission of the application and various forms to the "China Quality Certification Centre"(CQC). The necessary forms are provided by the CQC and most of them can be filled out in English.

If the application is approved, several product samples must be sent to China so that they can be tested in a laboratory for product safety. The CQC has its own laboratories, but some privately run laboratories are also recognized by the authority, including one in Hong Kong.

The final step is the inspection of the production. Usually two Chinese officials travel to visit the plant for 1 to 2 days. For CCC certification to be issued, it is essential that the products are manufactured so that they are safe to use. Not only the physical safety but also the chemical safety is considered. A Chinese interpreter must be present during the factory inspection, the costs of the inspection make up a large part of the total financial expenditure.

If one also passes the inspection, the CCC logo can be displayed on the product and packaging - after the Chinese authorities have checked the print layout. In addition, the CCC certificate allows the associated products to be commercially imported and distributed in China.

The duration until the completion of the certification is approximately 3-7 months, the costs are at least 10,000 Euro depending on the product, whereby most of the costs are incurred by the factory inspection and laboratory testing. So, the certification of several products at the same time is not much more expensive. According to this, only the laboratory test must be paid several times (approx. 2.500-4.500 Euro). Furthermore, it is possible to have a certain product line certified for a similar construction and not each product individually.

Another cost center is the obligatory annual inspection of the plant by a Chinese official, which is however cheaper than the first one (approx. 1,500-3,000 Euro) and only takes a few hours.
After every 5 years, the license expires and can be extended for 5 years at a time, if necessary, by indicating new suppliers and processing methods.

All in all, a CCC certification is quite complex and costs a low five-figure sum depending on the number and type of products.

For many companies, however, entering the Chinese market can still be worthwhile. The country has a population of 1.4 billion and a rapidly growing, prosperous middle class like no other country. Above all, products from Germany and Central Europe are highly regarded and demand for them continues unabated.