Toy retailers face punitive cost hikes as the European Commission threatens to impose more stringent toy safety rules.

Nearly 400 amendments have been proposed in the draft directive on toy safety, which will be voted on by the European Parliament’s Consumer Protection Committee next week.

One proposal would require retailers that design and make their own toys to pay for independent third-party testing.

99p Stores buying director Faisal Lalani said: “It’s the consumer that ends up paying for it. I don’t see the point of the [third-party] test.”

He added: “When you create an extra barrier to importing a product, it creates longer lead times.”

Other proposals include banning the sale of foods with promotional toys containing small parts, such as cereals.

Hamleys said that it already pays for third-party testing, and that changes to food sold with toys “will affect supermarkets”.

The Commission wants further powers to remove risky toys as well as more stringent rules on the use of chemicals. A decision could be made before the end of the year.