New chemical legislation recently passed by the EU will have significant ramifications for thousands of U.S. companies exporting chemicals and products containing chemicals to the EU, starting with a key December 1, 2008 compliance deadline.
Known as "REACH" – the Registration, Evaluation, and Authorization
of Chemicals – the legislation imposes substantial requirements
on companies to register and provide health risk information
on chemicals manufactured in or imported into the EU in excess
of one metric ton per year. The legislation applies, with limited
exceptions, to every chemical substance (new and existing) and
products containing those substances.
Failure to follow the mandates of REACH, including the failure
to pre-register certain substances by December 1, 2008, will
result in potentially significant disruptions to the marketing
of chemicals and products in the EU market.