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R&TTE Radio & Telecom Terminal Equipment Directive (RTTE)           

One of the newest directives currently evolving is the new Radio & Telecom Terminal Equipment Directive. It has replaced the TTE directive 98/13/EEC on April 8th 2001.

It has introduced the Manufacturers Declaration for both Radio Equipment and all Telecom equipment and remove the requirement to use a competent or notified body for both radio (GSM, cellular, short range and other  transmitters) and wired equipment for applications in harmonized frequency bands.

New Approach and Essential Requirements

The 99/5/EEC is a New Approach Directive. This means that requirements are formulated in so-called Essential Requirements. Article 3 specifies these as:

  1. Compliance to the EMC and Safety Directives without the 50/75 voltage limits
  2. Radio equipment shall use the spectrum effectively 
  3. Certain equipment classes may decided upon by the EC to:
  • perform "interworking"  with other equipment and must be connectable 
    throughout the EEC
  • does not harm the network
  • incorporates safe guards regarding user privacy
  • provides anti fraud measures
  • support access to emergency services 
  • supports features for disabled persons

Purchase the R&TTE-directive  (Text + Graphics in Adobe Acrobat format )


Approval Assessment routes

This directive specifies 4 routes to assess conformity to the essential requirements. The most easy uses the Manufacturers declaration and requires the application of Harmonized Standards. This approval procedure is comparable to the LVD and EMC directive and adds to the use of harmonized standards to the European Harmonized Spectrum (in development). Until then the user has to specify a radio profile and present this to a notified body.

Other routes specify the use of a Technical Construction File and the use of a notified body for file review. 

Frequency Plans and notification

The allocation of frequencies has no been harmonized in the whole EC. Therefore the usage of a certain radio equipment may or may be not allowed in a certain country (regardless the marketing). Any manufacturer of radio equipment should therefore assess ití»s frequency allocation in any EC country by consulting the National Frequency tables. If the frequency of ití»s equipment is not harmonized in a specific country, a notification procedure is required. Authorities are supposed to object within 4 weeks to such a notification. 

ce-test provides a notification service

Analog terminal Equipment (TBR 21)

Analog Terminal equipment such as phones and modems, need voluntary compliance with TBR 21 to make sure the equipment complies with the pan-European phone system. 

ce-test provides a test suite according to the full range of TBR-21 requirements.


The R&TTE directive will use the ce-mark current in use but adds for radio equipment the use of an "alert" symbol for equipment that is not meant to be used on the full EEC territory (but may be put on the market and sold). This is mainly for frequency allocation reasons and radio-equipment, but may also be used for analog equipment being not able to function in certain countries. The size and form of the symbol has been decided: a circle with an exclamation mark.

The e-symbol has been integrated into our ce true type font