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Electrical Appliance and Material Safety Act ("DENAN")

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This Law, formerly called the Electrical Appliance and Material Control Law ("DENTORI"), will be applied to many electrical products (mainly, those for consumers) intended to be used in Japan. It was amended in 1999, and the new Law came into effect from April 2001.

For "specified electrical appliances" ("Category A" in the former Law), government certification and T-mark under the former Law are abolished and third-party certification and new <PS>E mark are introduced. Self-confirmation is permitted for other products covered by the Law. In either case, manufacturers/importers of electrical products have duty to notify to METI (Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry), ensure conformity to technical standards, holding the testing records, and labeling the products.

Although it may be extended to cover all electrical products someday (like LVD in Europe), only the items listed in the ministerial ordinance are covered by the Law at this time. For example, instrumenents such as voltmeters or oscilloscopes are not covered, but I would agree with it. But personal computer is not contained in the list, too, and they will mysteriously fall outside the scope of the regulation (except for those DC power supply units and mains cords, which are listed as the specified electrical appliances).

Although traditional technical standards defined by the government are still effective, it is permitted to use standards harmonised to IEC standards for most electrical appliances which have relevant IEC standards (see the list here) The third-party certification required for the specified electrical appliances can be obtained from testing organizations such as UL, TUV, etc., and they will (hopefully) reduce the burden for the foreign manufacturers. However, manufacturers which doesn't have office in Japan can't notify to METI themselves, and importers in Japan must carry out all the duty required by the Law.

PS-E mark

Category MarkingAlternative
Specified electrical appliances <PS>E <PS>E
Electrical appliances other than the specified electrical appliances (PS)E (PS)E

Items Covered by the "DENAN" Law


METI (Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry) — "Electrical Appliances and Materials Safety Act".

English version (unofficial, although prepared by METI) of the Act and related statutes can be found under "For More Information".


What is the name "DENAN"?
The name "DENAN" came from the title of the Law in Japanese, "denki youhin anzen hou" (denki means electrical, and anzen means safety). It should be pronounced as "den-an", not "de-na-n".

Are UL-listed NEMA mains plugs acceptable for Japan?
In my opinion, the answer is No, in general. Mains plugs and mains cords are covered by the Law as specific electrical appliances, hence should have <PS>E mark or T-mark. Yet another point is that mains plugs used in Japan are very similar to NEMA plugs for US, but, strictly, they are not identical. So, although it can fall in gray zone in some situation, I suggest to always use <PS>E marked (or T-marked) mains plugs and mains cords for Japan.

by Tom Sato <VEF00200@nifty.com>, 2001-09-24, 2002-05-02, 2020-03

Notice: Information on this page was summarised personally, and may contain somewhat incorrect or unclear description. For the formal information, please refere to the primary information such as the Law and the Ordinances, or to the other reliable information sources.