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10-year REACH registration journey now completed – and the work continues

corresponding

Christel Musset
Director of Registration, ECHA

Abstract

The 10-year registration period for existing chemicals has now come to a close following the last REACH registration deadline on 31 May 2018. Companies from all over Europe have registered over 21 000 chemicals with the European Chemicals Agency, and the Agency has made information on their properties publicly available. This is a huge collaborative achievement by industry and authorities at EU and national level, and we can proudly say that we know more about the chemicals used in Europe than ever before. Nevertheless, the work to protect EU citizens and the environment from the risks of chemicals continues.


REACH REGISTRATION NOT A ONE-OFF EXERCISE

While European companies have invested significant resources in gathering information on their substances to stay legally on the market (‘no data, no market’ principle), it is good to keep in mind that REACH registration is not the end. It is only the start for managing chemicals responsibly under the EU chemicals legislation.

The registration dossier is meant to reflect the current knowledge on how a substance can be used safely at production sites and through the supply chain all the way down to the end user. It is up to the registrant to review their registration on a regular basis and update it when new information becomes available. Being proactive is not only good practice, but also a legal requirement.

The information in the registration dossier needs to be updated by the company when, for example, it learns something new about the composition of the substance, its properties, how it is used by the company’s clients, or the specific risk management measures needed. Significant changes in the production or import volumes and the company information must also be re ...