Consumer Protection Commissioner Meglena Kuneva has praised the progress made by the European Advertising Standards Alliance (EASA) in the field of self-regulation in the advertising industry.
Commenting in the latest edition of the EASA Blue Book released on 6 September, Kuneva said she is convinced that the Commission and EASA can “go further together to establish advertising self-regulation as a living best practice model”.
The Commission said that it hopes that the advertising industry will extend the scope of advertising self-regulation as well as strengthen it – with the aim of ensuring “legal and honest” advertising and increased consumer protection.
Concrete results highlighted in the Blue Book include the new self-regulatory organisations currently up and running in Poland and Lithuania, with similar bodies to follow in Cyprus and Estonia in 2008.
“Reflected in the pages of this book is the proof that the advertising industry can implement effective and transparent self-regulation systems across Europe and beyond. I am sure that readers will be convinced that self-regulation exists, that it works, that it ensures legal, decent, honest and truthful advertising and that it is capable of inspiring confidence in consumers”, said EASA Chairman Jean-Pierre Teyssier.
Meanwhile, the Commission is actively encouraging effective self-regulatory procedures in its policy initiatives on alcohol, nutrition and health, as well as the draft Audiovisual Media Services Directive.
Back in May, it gave the food industry and advertisers until 2010 to develop stronger advertising codes and urged the food and retail industry to reformulate foods (EURACTIV 30/05/07).
The European advertising industry has been following a strategic plan since 2005 – under co-ordination from EASA – that is designed to strengthen self-regulation. EASA is due to present the results of this plan to the Commission before the end of 2007.