Strategies and Approaches of Companies in Portugal and Spain in Complying with the REACH Regulation
The implementation of the Registration, Evaluation, Authorization, and Restriction of Chemicals (REACH) regulation had been viewed to be the most ambitious chemicals legislation in the world and had placed a great challenge among the European Union (EU) member states. While government regulatory agencies were focused on how they can successfully implement and enforce the legislation, the industries’ concern was to guarantee the compliance with the regulation. Despite the progress, implementation of the regulation still experienced significant problems in the quality of the information provided by companies in their registration dossiers. Given that the success of the REACH process depended primarily on the adequate and reliable information supplied by industries, there was a need to document and manage the knowledge gained and generated since its implementation. Data from survey questionnaires revealed that major issues and concerns identified by industries consisted of communication problems among participants in the implementation of the Substance Information Exchange Forum (SIEF), failure to reach an agreement on the sharing of existing data, testing cost and lack of response from suppliers in the use of substance and correction of errors in the safety data sheet. To address these issues and concerns, the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) implemented the SIEF for EU-based chemical industries to form consortiums and jointly carry out registration and dossier submission. Participants identified SIEF as the best practice enabling companies to complete their registration and dossier submission, as well as the most efficient method in complying with REACH regulation.