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Japan Strengthens Regulations on PFHxS and Its Derivatives in Response to Global Environmental Concerns

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Japan has announced the revision of the Order for Enforcement of the Act on the Evaluation of Chemical Substances and Regulation of Their Manufacture, etc. The revision, scheduled to take effect around January 2024, designates perfluorohexane sulfonic acid (PFHxS), its isomers, or their salts as Class I Specified Chemical Substances. This classification necessitates authorization for their manufacture or import.

The decision to revise the regulations was prompted by the 10th Conference of the Parties to the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants in June 2022, where it was resolved to include PFHxS, its salts, and related compounds within the scope for elimination. To comply with this international agreement, Japan's Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare, the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, and the Ministry of the Environment jointly designated PFHxS, its isomers, or their salts as Class I Specified Chemical Substances in November 2022.

Furthermore, the revised regulations, slated to be enforced around May 2024, will also ban the import of products containing PFHxS, its isomers, or their salts. These products include water-repellent textiles, etching agents for metal processing, surface treatment agents for plating, antireflection agents for semiconductor manufacturing, resists for semiconductors, and various other items, including water-repellent and oil-repellent clothes and floor coverings.

The revisions are part of Japan's ongoing commitment to stricter environmental regulations and align with international agreements aimed at reducing the use and impact of harmful chemicals on the environment and human health.



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