London – The UK government has issued guidelines for businesses that make or import chemicals, in case of a no-deal Brexit on 29 March.
From that date, chemicals would have to be registered to a new UK system, according to DEFRA (the UK’s department of environment, food and rural affairs).
The UK REACH (registration, evaluation, authorisation and restriction of chemicals) system would replace the EU chemicals safety regime, DEFRA said 23 Jan.
UK REACH, it explained, would require businesses to “demonstrate how a chemical can be safely used with minimal risk to human health or the environment.”
UK businesses, it added, would have to validate existing registrations with the UK Health and Safety Executive (HSE) within 60 days of the departure.
Additionally, businesses that import a chemical substance from the EU would have to set up a new registration with HSE within 180 days of UK leaving the EU.
UK businesses that export chemicals to the EU would need an EU REACH registration in place once the UK leaves the EU.
The chemicals sector is the UK’s second biggest manufacturing industry and UK businesses currently hold over 12,000 registrations under EU REACH.
A ‘no deal’ would mean that a range of other key sectors would also be required to register any imported chemicals they use on UK REACH.
This, said DEFRA, includes the motor manufacturing, cosmetics, construction and cleaning-products industries.