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British Rubber & Polyurethane Products Association

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Update to Reach Legislation

Posted on 11 April 2019

On Tuesday 26 March the REACH Statutory Instrument (SI), which makes provision for ‘UK REACH’ to be brought into law if the UK leaves the EU without a withdrawal agreement, was approved by the House of Lords, having already been approved in the House of Commons. This means that this secondary legislation will now be incorporated into the UK statute book, so that in the event of a ‘no deal’ scenario, UK REACH regulations will be in place for exit day.

However DEFRA has since laid a short amending SI that will address two specific concerns raised by industry about ensuring continuity of registrations of imported chemicals at the point of no-deal exit.  Since laying the REACH SI on 9 January, a number of stakeholders have raised two technical points regarding the scope of the ‘notification’ transitional provisions for existing UK Downstream Users. In response to industry’s concerns and suggestions, DEFRA has laid an amending SI to clarify that:

  • UK-based Only Representatives (ORs) will be able to make notifications for imports sourced by existing UK Downstream Users (DUs) and distributors. If the notification is completed by an OR within 180 days of the UK leaving the EU, the DU or distributor is exempted from the duty to notify. DUs and distributors sourcing from the EU/EEA are advised to liaise with their suppliers, to ensure that a notification is completed by one or other party within 180 days.
  • Notification provisions apply to imports from 3rd countries coming to the UK directly, if covered by a registration held by an OR based in another EU/EEA country.

The amending SI and explanatory notes are available here.  The SI will now make its way through the parliamentary processes, with the intention that it will come into force at the point that the UK leaves the EU, supporting continuity for UK-EU supply chains.  Guidance on the HSE website will be updated to reflect these provisions.