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REACH stands for the Regulation for Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals. The REACH Regulation entered into force on 1 June 2007 to streamline and improve the former legislative framework for chemicals of the European Union (EU). REACH also created the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) which has a central co-ordination and implementation role in the overall process. ECHA is located in Helsinki, Finland and manages the registration, evaluation, authorisation and restriction processes for chemical substances to ensure consistency across the countries in which REACH applies.
The following sources of information about REACH are available:
- The REACH Regulation and other related pieces of legislation published in the Official Journal of the European Union; links to these texts can be found in the section on Regulations of the ECHA website: http://echa.europa.eu/regulations
- The "Understanding REACH" section of the ECHA website provides concise and basic information on REACH: http://echa.europa.eu/regulations/reach/understanding-reach
- The REACH guidance documents provide explanatory and supplementary information to the legal text. They are the result of both consultation of relevant stakeholders and close co-operation between the National Competent Authorities and the European Commission. Final guidance documents and draft versions in the process of being updated as well as fact sheets and formats are available on the ECHA website on Guidance on REACH and CLP implementation http://echa.europa.eu/support/guidance-on-reach-and-clp-implementation
- The Navigator will help you to identify your specific obligations under REACH. You can find a link to the Navigator on the ECHA website. Please follow the link below and choose under title "Use the Navigator" the link "Start a new Navigator session": http://echa.europa.eu/support/guidance-on-reach-and-clp-implementation/identify-your-obligations
Member States endorse national provisions defining controls and sanctions for non-compliance with REACH. We recommend you to contact the relevant enforcement authorities in your country for information on the national control procedures in place. You can also contact the customs authorities and the national helpdesk for further information:
The first points of contact on REACH are the national REACH helpdesks established in each country of the European Economic Area (EEA). They provide services in their local language(s) and know the national conditions (e.g. national legislation, enforcement authorities, etc.). : http://echa.europa.eu/support/helpdesks/national-helpdesks/list-of-national-helpdesks
Trade associations, sector groups, chambers of commerce and other organisations, which are particularly familiar with sector-specific terminology, have set up stakeholder helpdesks to provide tailor-made support for their industrial sectors and products; e.g. plastics, minerals, mineral oils, paints.
ECHA provides assistance particularly to those companies that are registering substances and who have questions on e.g. REACH provisions, ECHA's IT systems and the administration of submitted dossiers.
For non-EU companies we have collected REACH information particularly concerning them, available at: http://echa.europa.eu/contact/helpdesk-contact-form/enquiry-on-reach-from-non-eu-countries. If the questions are related to the conditions in a particular country, you may also turn to the corresponding national REACH helpdesk (see the link above) before contacting ECHA.