In the face of opposition from Apple, the European Commission proposed a revised Radio Equipment Directive on Thursday that would require manufacturers to make USB-C the standard charging port for all popular electronic devices.
The Commission plans to require manufacturers to stop packaging chargers with new electronic devices to "limit the number of unwanted chargers."
The rule will require all devices to use USB-C connections, which are already used by Android phones. It would force Apple gadgets that utilize lightning cables to have USB-C ports in EU countries.
There will be a two-year transition period once the law takes effect, during which manufacturers must convert their gadgets to the universal standard.
Apple opposes the proposed regulation, claiming that moving to USB-C would result in increased waste.
"We remain concerned that strict regulation mandating just one type of connector stifles innovation rather than encouraging it, which in turn will harm consumers in Europe and around the world," an Apple spokesperson told TechRadar.
Apple also argues that controlling a single technology would suffocate innovation, pointing out that if the EU had mandated such a rule in 2009, both Lightning and USB-C would not have taken off.
It also highlighted concerns about the two-year transition period for businesses to comply with the regulations.
Margrethe Vestager, the Commission's vice-president, defended the plan, saying it gave the industry plenty of time to come up with its own solutions. She added that the new rule is a significant win for consumers and the environment, and that it is in line with the Commission's "green and digital ambitions."
Apple has had a series of run-ins with the Commission in recent years. The body charged the company's App store with antitrust offenses in April.
It ordered Apple to pay Ireland €13 billion in back taxes in 2016, but the European Court of Justice later overturned the decision.
The most recent legislative proposal is the first step toward making the requirement EU law. Following the Commission's proposal, the European Parliament and EU countries will discuss their intentions.
The bill can only become law if the parliament, which has expressed support for the initiative, and the Council agree on an identical text. The Commission hopes the bill will be adopted by 2022.