In a climate of uncertainty, the unequivocal marking of footwear exported to the Russian Federation is about to become mandatory. Complying with the obligations of this requirement can be extremely difficult and, for this reason, Assocalzaturifici has signed an agreement with OTC in favour of its members, which will make it easier to fulfil the steps needed to label their products with a Data Matrix Code, so they can be exported in compliance.
This was one of the topics at MICAM with Veronica Palestini, OTS sales country specialist for Russia, who over the course of her seminar “Export Russia: how to adapt to the system of unequivocal marking” explained why and how the new system can be introduced: “The system will go into effect on 1 March for footwear and, even if there were some rumours about a possible postponement of the measure to September, we must be all systems go. At OTS, having participated in the pilot project, we are on the frontline and can provide information and updates to those who decide to place their trust in our service”.
Introduced by Russian authorities with the aim of combating product counterfeiting, while protecting intellectual property and consumer rights, the new unequivocal marking measure allows the product to be traced from the producer to the consumer.
The Data Matrix Code is the unequivocal marking that contains all the information regarding the product and it must be placed on every single item. To obtain it, a number of different steps must be followed: the data of the products must be transmitted to the customer/importer, who from their end will then register them in the system to obtain the relative codes and then retransmit them to the producer, who will then have to ask the relative Russian operator to issue the final code to be applied on every single product. A complex procedure, which OTS will make easier by assisting the producer in each and every phase.
At the end of the seminar, a lively debate ensued, with operators raising doubts about the Data Matrix classifications, which often do not coincide with the features of footwear, and the exceptions of certain work procedures that might not be considered by the system, with the manufacturer risking penalties for non-compliance. “With the introduction of the system – explains Veronica Palestini – begins a phase in a year where certain adjustments will be made and positions in doubt will be cleared up. OTS will in any case continue to monitor the situation in order to reply to these questions”.