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Great Britain starts own chemicals legislation: UK-REACH

Author : Dekra

07 January 2021

With the withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the EU and the end of the transition period on December 31, 2020, the validity of EU Regulation No. 1907/2006 ("REACH") in Great Britain also ended. A corresponding British law will now come into force ("UK-REACH"). Companies that trade in chemicals across borders should quickly adapt to the new rules.

The British government has issued the "REACH etc. (Amendment etc.) (EU Exit) Regulations 2019" (UK-REACH), which came into force on January 1, 2021. It is largely congruent with EU REACH (EU Regulation No. 1907/2006) but limited to Great Britain. EU REACH registrations are no longer valid in the UK. However, in Northern Ireland EU regulations and EU REACH continue to apply.

On the one hand, this affects companies in Great Britain that are cut off from their EU supply chain and no longer have an EU REACH registration for export to the EU. On the other hand, companies in the EU are affected and no longer have direct access to the UK market or are cut off from their UK suppliers. The UK REACH contains two regulations for British companies:

-  Manufacturers who have their own EU REACH registration are allocated a UK-REACH registration via the so-called "grandfathering", they must submit a basic registration before the 30th April 2021.
-  Downstream users who purchase their products from the EU can receive transition periods of 2-6 years via a “DUIN” notification before they have to submit a UK REACH registration; the DUIN must be made before the October 27, 2021.
-  In both cases, the company will have to submit a complete registration dossier before the end of the transition period. The length of the transition period (2, 4 or 6 years) depends on the annual volume of the substance and the hazard properties.
-  There are no regulations in UK REACH for EU companies that want to continue to supply the UK market. They have the option of engaging a British Only Representative who takes care of the DUIN notification for the recipient and thus protects existing supply relationships. In this way, the supplier does not have to disclose the composition of his products to his customers. However, the acquisition of new customers is only possible after a full UK REACH registration has been completed.

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