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REACH - Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals

22 September 2009
by inadim -- last modified 24 September 2009

REACH is the Regulation on Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals. It entered into force on 1st June 2007. It streamlines and improves the former legislative framework on chemicals of the European Union.


The main aims of REACH are to ensure a high level of protection of human health and the environment from the risks that can be posed by chemicals, the promotion of alternative test methods, the free circulation of substances on the internal market and enhancing competitiveness and innovation.

REACH makes industry responsible for assessing and managing the risks posed by chemicals and providing appropriate safety information to their users. In parallel, the European Union can take additional measures on highly dangerous substances, where there is a need for complementing action at EU level.

REACH legislation, nanomaterials, guidance, archives

Limitations Directive for Dangerous Substances and Preparations

Some substances and preparations are not considered dangerous and circulate freely on the European market without any particular rules. Others are classified as dangerous and can circulate freely only when packaged and labelled in accordance with Directive 67/548/EEC (for dangerous substances) or Directive 1999/45/EC (for dangerous preparations). In a relatively small number of cases the rules for classification, packaging and labelling are insufficient to reduce risks and must be supplemented by rules to restrict marketing and use under the Limitations Directive, i.e. Directive 76/769/EEC on the approximation of the laws, regulations and administrative provisions of the Member States relating to restrictions on the marketing and use of certain dangerous substances and preparations.

Substances falling under the Limitations Directive are listed in the Annex I to that Directive which also specifies the restrictions on marketing and use applying in each particular case.

Where a substance is not already listed in Annex I, the name of the substance and the desired limitations on marketing and use are added using proposals to the Council and the Parliament to amend the Directive. Where a substance is listed and the requirement is to change the limitations already in place, this is done by a Commission Directive adapting the existing limitations to technical progress.

Source: European Commission