China to Enhance Management of Existing Chemicals

Under China’s current regulatory framework, existing chemical substances are managed empirically and based on the regulatory catalogues, unlike new chemical substances which must go through strict risk assessment based on scientifically robust data prior to market entrance approval. Speaking at the 9th Trilateral Policy Dialogue on Chemicals Management among China, Japan and Korea on 11 November, Mr. Kexiong DU of China’s Ministry of Ministry of Environmental Protection (MEP) introduced the authority’s efforts to perfect the system and progress in environmental risk management of chemical substances. MEP is working closely with the competent authorities of industry and Information technology, health, agriculture, etc. to carry out environmental and health risk assessment of existing chemicals. Based on the assessment results, a catalogue of industrial chemicals subject to prioritised national controls will be issued with instructions to phase out, restrict, or substitute the listed substances in production, use and consumption. Meanwhile, MEP is working on nominating the environmental endocrine disruptors (EDC) subject to prioritised control with a plan set for issuing the chemical list by the end of 2017. The authority’s screening process combines literature review of globally recognised data resources with investigation of the production and use conditions and assessment of environmental sensitive zones. In the longer term, EDCs will be incorporated into the existing chemical control scheme. Furthermore, to develop a more integrated management strategy, China’s White Paper on Chemical Management Policy is being formed by referencing the Strategic Approach to International Chemicals Management (SAICM) and borrowing the experience of international practices. The document is regarded as China’s chemical management roadmap and will underpin the future development of China’s regulatory system. At present the first draft has been completed and awaits further review opinions.

Chemlinked, 19 November 2015 ; ;