With the prospect of a no-deal Brexit growing larger by the day, it is important for businesses to know what they will need to do in this scenario. In the case of a no-deal Brexit, the EU REACH Regulation will be amended for the UK market only, retaining its key principles and renamed UK REACH. After a no-deal Brexit, EU and UK regulatory agencies would operate independently. Any company supplying or procuring substances or mixtures between the two markets will need to ensure that the substances or mixtures are registered with both ECHA and the HSE.
Existing UK-based EU REACH registration holders will need to validate their registrations within 120 days of the UK leaving the EU. Companies will be issued with a new UK REACH registration number. This registration process is estimated to take 5 minutes per substance and there is no bulk upload facility. In order to access the EU/EEA market after a no-deal Brexit, a company would need to either work with EU/EEA customers to put in place valid EU REACH registrations as importers or work with the non-EU/EEA manufacturer of the substance for the manufacturer to appoint an EU/EEA-based Only Representative.
Existing UK-based downstream users or distributors of EU REACH registered substances whose suppliers are UK-based will not need to take any action. UK-based downstream users and distributors procuring substances or mixtures from EU/EEA-based entities must notify the HSE and register the substances on UK REACH IT, unless their EU/EEA supplier appoints a UK-based Only Representative, or they change to a UK registered supplier.
UK-based companies importing substances from outside the EU/EEA will need to register with UK REACH IT in order to access the UK market. In order to access the EU/EEA market they will need to either work with your EU/EEA customers to put in place valid EU REACH registrations as importers or work with the non-EU/EEA manufacturer of the substance for the manufacturer to appoint an EU/EEA-based Only Representative.
UK-based REACH authorisation holders will need to provide the HSE with the technical information relating to the authorisation, within 60 days of the UK leaving the EU, in order to continue using the authorised substance or supplying the authorised substance for use.
For a UK-based downstream user of a REACH authorisation held by an EU/EEA-based company to continue using the authorised substance or to continue supplying it for use, they must confirm they are an existing authorised downstream user and notify the HSE of the existing authorisation. They must include in this notification: any conditions set out in the existing EU authorisation and the identity of the supplier of the substance. The confirmation and notification must be completed within 60 days of the UK leaving the EU.
Exemptions under EU REACH or substances imported or manufactured for purposes of product(s) and process-oriented research and development (PPORDs), where the research and development concerned takes place in the UK, will be grandfathered into UK REACH. Manufacturers, importers and producers of these substances must notify the HSE of the number and notification date assigned by ECHA and supply the HSE with copies of any additional necessary information given to ECHA. Notification and supply of additional information must take place within 120 days of the UK leaving the EU.
If a company’s registration under the EU REACH Regulation is in progress at the point that the UK leaves the EU, you will need to submit a separate new registration to the UK Agency (the HSE). This will incur the fee applicable to a new registration, payable to the UK Agency (the HSE). A registration fee, payable to the HSE, will be incurred in this case.
If a UK company has submitted an authorisation application to ECHA but ECHA has not finalised its opinions under Article 64(5) by the point that the UK leaves the EU and the company wants to continue placing this substance on the market or using it for the use(s) applied for in the UK after the sunset date set in Annex XIV of REACH, then the company will need to resubmit its dossier to the HSE.