Five facts about REACH
After three large waves of registrations, REACH is now valid also for small and medium-sized businesses which work with relatively small quantities of substances. Almost 100,000 registrations have been carried out in a major effort. However, the great European regulation has also introduced various new restrictions designed to protect people and the environment. The regulation will therefore continue to keep the industry on its toes, as our five facts show.
Number of registrations
Anyone wishing to place chemical substances on the European market must identify the hazards and risks they pose and have them registered. In several waves, more and more substances were covered by this Europe-wide uniform regulation with the REACH regulation issued in 2007. This is also shown by the number of registrations, which has risen massively over the last 10 years.
Top registration countries
Most of the registrations are in the three countries with the largest chemical industries: Germany, France and Great Britain. What exactly happens with REACH when the UK leaves the EU remains to be seen. In the worst-case scenario, Italy would move up to third place, with just over 8,200 registrations at present. Among other regulatory topics, Brexit will be a hot topic at the Conference EC Regulatory Forum on 27-28 November in Brussels.
Contact with people
Not all substances will ever be placed on the market. These are intermediate substances that are formed during the manufacture of products, and in doing so completely react again and do not come into contact with humans. Registration in this case is considerably simpler and requires less data. Just over a third of registered substances fall into this category.
Most substances are older
Over 70% of all registered substances existed before REACH and they had no registration or any equivalent. A further 6.6% were already registered before the regulation, but they are considered as registered on the basis of prior equivalent notifications. After all, 22.6% of the registered substances are actually newer than the regulation and therefore had to go through the complete registration cycle.
Restrictions under REACH
Currently, 70 substances are subject to restrictions by Annex XVII of the REACH Regulation. Examples include the prohibition on the use of substances in products that come into contact with human skin, limit values or similar.
The European Coatings Regulatory Forum in November in Brussels will give you further insights into the latest and most important regulatory developments effecting the coatings industry.