UK government releases document on chemical regulation in case of no-deal Brexit



The UK government has outlined a framework for regulating chemicals if a no-deal Brexit occurs, saying that it would preserve the EU’s chemical regulations “as far as possible”.

Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals (REACH) is the main piece of EU legislation regarding regulating chemicals. It requires chemicals to be registered prior to being placed on the market, and also has additional regulatory controls on hazardous chemicals. The government published numerous documents on 24 September detailing how a no-deal Brexit would affect different sectors, including one on REACH from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra).

Defra said that the UK would preserve the REACH legislation as far as possible in the event of no deal and that the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) would act as the lead UK regulatory authority alongside the Environmental Agency. Plans are also being drawn up for a UK IT system for the registration of new chemicals, similar to the existing EU system.

However, companies registered with REACH would no longer have access to the European Economic Area (EAA) market without first transferring their registrations to an EEA-based organisation. Downstream companies importing chemicals from the EEA would also have new registration requirements.

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