17 November 2005 12:51 [Source: ICIS news]
LONDON (ICIS news)--The European Union’s (EU’s) new chemicals policy Reach could be in force by 2007 and fully operational by 2018, lead Reach rapporteur in the European Parliament (EP) Guido Sacconi said on Thursday.
European MEPS voted in parliament today to create a Reach chemicals regulation much more aligned with the interest of industry.
Voting on close to 1,200 amendments to the original draft tabled by the European Commission (EC), politicians put their stamp a range of measures designed to streamline the first registration step in the new chemicals legislation. Under Reach the EU wants to register, evaluate and authorise chemicals through a new chemicals agency based in Finland.
“We have managed to strike a balance between people’s different expectations,” Sacconi said. “Not everyone will laud this agreement but we have a functioning minimum of Reach for all stakeholders.”
European Commission (EC) environment commissioner Stavros Dimas welcomed the amendments on registration and authorisation accepted by parliament. The Commission has accepted time limits for authorisation, but the duration of these limits will be discussed wit the European Council before an expected Council vote on Reach on 29 November.
“I think this time round we are in step with citizens and industry,” Sacconi said.
Voting in parliament today went very much as planned, although there remain areas of dispute in the various phases of the proposed new rules.
“This is an area where Europe can take a genuine lead in sustainable development”, Sacconi said.
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