REACH and Brexit

Government and the EU are working to secure a comprehensive agreement on the terms of the UK’s withdrawal from the EU. However, both have also provided advice to business regarding the actions they should take in the event of a no-deal scenario, including those related to the Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation & Restriction of Chemicals (REACH). Please see the following document for details.


REACH came into force in June 2007. It aims to reduce the risk from chemicals to humans and the environment and encourages the substitution of unsafe chemicals. The rules affect manufacturers and suppliers in the automotive industry and also companies in other industry sectors. Importers or manufacturers are obliged to submit safety data on more than 30,000 substances used in everyday articles such as cars, textiles, electronics, paints, packaging, mobile phones or toys.

The Regulation itself runs to around 900 pages, so a task force was set up to make it more relevant and straightforward to the auto supply chain. Comprising SMMT and representatives of major vehicle manufacturers (ACEA, JAMA and KAMA) as well as CLEPA, the body representing European suppliers, the group created an Automotive Industry Guideline (AIG) on REACH.

The latest edition was published in June 2012 and can be downloaded here.

In July 2015, a new annex titled ‘Safety Data Sheet Compliance Checks’ was added to the English documentation set. This annex provides guidance for downstream users on conducting plausibility checks of incoming safety data sheets (SDSs).

Useful links:

EC https://ec.europa.eu/growth/sectors/chemicals/reach_en

Defra https://www.gov.uk/guidance/how-to-comply-with-reach-chemical-regulations


ECHA http://echa.europa.eu/regulations/reach