14 January 2005 14:41 [Source: ICIS news]
PARIS (CNI)--French chemicals trade body, the Union des Industries Chimiques (UIC), called on Friday for a “proportioned, progressive and ‘practicable’" new chemicals policy for Europe.
Ahead of the European Parliament’s 19 January public meeting on the European Union's proposed registration, evaluation and authorisation of chemicals (Reach*) proposals, the UIC said the system needed to be more efficient and economical.
It cited an estimated cost of Reach to France of 1.6% of GDP (gross domestic product) or Euro28bn ($37bn) 10 years from implementation. The estimate is based on the results of a study it commissioned from Mercer Management Consulting published in April 2004.
Fundamental changes to the Reach draft are required, UIC suggested, if small to medium sized enterprises (SMEs) particularly are not to be hurt. ?xml:namespace>
It wants to see a risk based system adopted and not one linked simply to tonnages of production.
Reach needs to be managed effectively by the new, Finland based, chemicals agency the UIC indicated. It also argued that Reach needed to preserve intellectual property rights and the confidentiality of commercially sensitive information. A right to review Reach decisions should be built into the process, it suggested.
UIC said Reach should contribute to the improved competitiveness of the chemicals industry. It added that Reach should also favour innovation and be compatible with the commitments the EU makes within the World Trade Organisation (WTO).
The French chemical producers organisation also wants the results of work undertaken under the joint Sport (strategic partnership on Reach testing) initiative to be taken fully into account by the European Council and Parliament when they consider the proposals.
(Nigel Davis in London contributed to this story.)
*For details see: http://www.europarl.eu.int/comparl/envi/reach/default_en.htm
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