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Act now to stay on the EU market after the UK’s withdrawal

ECHA/NR/19/04   All companies placing chemical substances onto the markets of the European Union and European Economic Area need to prepare for the United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the EU. New instructions are now available on ECHA’s website.  

Helsinki, 8 February 2019 – ECHA recommends companies to prepare for a ‘no deal’ scenario ahead of the UK’s withdrawal on 30 March 2019.

With continued political uncertainty regarding the withdrawal agreement, the Agency urges companies to act now to continue complying with their obligations under the REACH; Classification, Labelling and Packaging (CLP); Prior Informed Consent (PIC); and Biocidal Products (BPR) regulations.

To keep substances that are registered under REACH legally on the EU-27/EEA market, UK-based manufacturers and formulators can either transfer their business to, or appoint an only representative in, one of the EU-27/EEA countries.

Subject to further developments, ECHA will open a ‘Brexit window’ in REACH-IT from 12 to 29 March, 24:00 hours CET (11 p.m. UK time) to enable UK-based companies to make these changes and transfer their REACH registrations. If an only representative is not appointed, the EU-27/EEA importers will have to submit their own registrations.

Step-by-step instructions for using the ‘Brexit window’ are now available on ECHA’s web pages for the UK’s withdrawal from the EU. The pages also include a link to the European Chemical Industry Council’s (Cefic) recommended standard wording for the suspensive conditional clause to be used in contractual arrangements when appointing only representatives.

If a downstream user in one of the EU-27/EEA countries relies on REACH authorisations granted to a UK-based company, they need to make sure that there is another EU-27/EEA supplier with a valid authorisation for their use.

EU-27 companies will also need to notify their exports of hazardous substances regulated under the PIC Regulation when exporting to the UK. This will be done using the ePIC tool. The export notification in ePIC needs to be submitted 35 days before the export. ECHA will soon clarify how to deal with exports to the UK during the period right after the UK’s effective withdrawal.

Companies based in the EU-27/EEA will also need to prepare for placing substances on the UK market after 29 March, which will be governed by UK law. The UK Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has published respective guidance.

Further details, including a list of substances registered only by UK companies, are available on ECHA’s web pages for the UK’s withdrawal from the EU.

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» Publication Date: 08/02/2019

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This project has received funding from the European Union Seventh Framework Programme (FP7/2007-2013) under grant agreement n° [310187].