01 March 1996 00:00 [Source: APC]
The Hong Kong government is urging local manufacturers to prepare for Germany's impending prohibition of consumer products which contain azo-dyestuffs, as part of that country's increasingly stringent environmental regulations.
A report by the government's Trade Development Council (TDC) said that other major garment suppliers to the German market, such as Turkey, are taking a serious approach to the legislation and that Hong Kong manufacturers should waste no time in addressing the issue.
Affected dyestuffs are those which, upon decomposition, produce any of the 20 amines suspected of being carcinogenic. The production and importation of consumer products containing these azo-dyestuffs will be banned in Germany from 1 April 1996, while sales of them will be prohibited in the domestic market from 1 October 1996.
Control of certain secondhand or recycled products and work-related clothing, will begin on 1 January 2001.
The TDC's report recommends that Hong Kong manufacturers should obtain a guarantee from their raw material suppliers, which in turn should ask for proof from their dyestuff suppliers.
While Hong Kong's garments exports to Germany will be the largest product category in the territory to be affected, the ban also covers bedding, blankets, footwear, wigs, artificial eyelashes, bangles, spectacle frames and even watch straps.
The TDC report also recommends that manufacturers should test their final products according to the German legislation and obtain certifications issued by testing laboratories. A number of laboratories in the territory are said to offer such services.
For the latest chemical news, data and analysis that directly impacts your business sign up for a free trial to ICIS news - the breaking online news service for the global chemical industry.
Get the facts and analysis behind the headlines from our market leading weekly magazine: sign up to a free trial to ICIS Chemical Business.