If your company is based in an EU or EEA country, EU legislation and obligations will continue to apply to you. However, your business partners in the UK will need to adjust their operations to follow the new UK chemicals legislation.
If you purchased a chemical substance from a UK-based company that registered a substance under REACH, you will no longer be able to rely on the substance being legally registered after the transition period ends.
For the substance to remain legally registered, the UK-based manufacturer from which you bought the chemical will need to appoint an only representative established in one of the EU or EEA countries. Alternatively, you can choose to register the substance yourself as an importer.
If your company purchases a mixture from a UK-based supplier to be placed on the EU market, you will become an importer of that mixture into the EU. You will have to fulfil all the CLP obligations for that mixture. This applies even if you do not change the composition of the mixture.
If your UK-based supplier is currently an importer of the chemical from outside the EU/EEA, they have the option of moving their importing activity to the EU or EEA. Otherwise, you will need to register the substance as the EU-importer.
Joint registration with a UK-based company
Things will also change if your company is a member of a joint submission with a UK-based company as the lead registrant. A registration made by a UK-based company will no longer exist after the transition period.
If you plan to import substances from a UK-based company into the EU after the transition period ends, it is you, not the UK-based company, who will have to submit the C&L notifications to ECHA. A C&L notification must also be submitted for substances in mixtures, when the concentration of the substance triggers the classification of the mixture. A separate C&L notification is not needed when you have registered the substance. Any mixture that you import will need to comply with the CLP Regulation.
Poison centre notifications (Article 45 and Annex VIII to CLP)
If you, as an EU-based company, plan to import a hazardous mixture from a UK-based company into the EU after the transition period ends, it is you, not the UK-based company who will have to submit the poison centre notification to the appointed body in each Member State where you place the mixture on the market (note that “import” is placing on the market).
A notification is needed before you place the mixture on the market after the end of the transition period, even if your UK supplier has already submitted one. Note that Annex VIII to the CLP Regulation will apply to mixtures intended for consumer and professional use from 1 January 2021. In many Member States, national systems will continue to apply until that date.
What about the PIC Regulation?
As an EU company, you will need to start notifying exports to the UK of chemicals under the PIC Regulation. After the transition period, UK companies on the other hand will no longer have obligations under the PIC Regulation. This also means that UK companies will no longer have to notify their exports through ePIC or have access to the application, and export notifications submitted by any UK-based company will be disabled.
- Identify your key UK-based business partners.
- If you depend on a UK-based lead registrant, consider your options for continuing being part of the joint submission:
- The UK-based lead registrant moves to an EU country or
- Make sure that the UK-based lead registrant transfers the role of the lead to an EU-based company. This needs to happen before the transition period ends and the registration ceases to exist.
- Act now – updated IT tools and Brexit advice for companies 05/11/2020
- EU Commission notice to stakeholders on export and import of hazardous chemicals [PDF] [EN] 17/07/2020
- EU Commission: Getting ready for the end of the transition period - readiness notices
- EU Commission notice to stakeholders on biocidal products [PDF] [EN] 17/06/2020
- EU Commission notice to stakeholders on chemicals regulation 30/03/2020
- Act and prepare for ‘no deal Brexit’ to stay on the market and keep supplies 12/09/2019
- Companies recommended to transfer registrations before the UK’s withdrawal 03/04/2019
- Act now to stay on the EU market after the UK’s withdrawal 08/02/2019
- ECHA updates information for companies on UK withdrawal from EU 11/10/2018