EU ministers give Reach final nod of approval

18 December 2006 11:07  [Source: ICIS news]

EU ministers give final backing to ReachBRUSSELS (ICIS news)--European environment ministers meeting in Brussels gave their formal backing to the EU Registration, Evaluation and Authorisation of Chemicals (Reach) legislation on Monday.


The new rules governing the European chemical industry will come into force in June 2007.


This nod of unanimous approval from national ministers follows overwhelming support for the compromise proposal on Reach by members of the European Parliament (MEPs) last week.


It ends three-and-a-half years of heated debate between environmentalists and the chemical sector.


Reach will require around 30,000 chemicals, produced or imported into the EU, to be registered with a central, Helsinki-based agency.


Substances of high concern, such as carcinogens, will be authorised if manufacturers agree to develop substitution plans and where alternatives do not exist, they propose research and development that could lead to a substitute.


Europe's chemical industry broadly welcomed the EU's new policy, but attacked what it called unnecessary requirements for product authorisation.

By: Philippa Jones
+44 20 8652 3214

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