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REACH Authorisation
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Identification of Substances of Very High Concern

In a Nutshell

The very first step towards Authorisation is the identification of a substance as a Substance of Very High Concern (SVHC). The assessment of a substance performed by a Member State or ECHA may lead to different conclusions, i.e.:
  • Harmonised Classification and Labelling: The substance should be given a harmonised classification or labelling or the existing harmonised classification should be revised. This triggers a specific public consultation (consultation period of 45 days).
  • Restriction: The substance poses an unacceptable risk to human health and the environment that should be addressed on a Community-wide basis and some or all of its uses should be submitted to restrictions or even banned. This chemicals management proposal triggers a first public consultation of six months. ECHA’s Risk Assessment Committee (RAC) has nine months after publication of the proposal to provide an opinion on the appropriateness of the proposal to reduce the risks to human health and the environment. ECHA’s Committee for Socio-Economic Analysis (SEAC) balances the human health and environmental arguments with the socio-economic parameters so as to provide a choice for society. SEAC’s opinion is subject to a sixty days public consultation.
The EU Commission takes the final decision on the basis of RAC and SEAC opinions and the outcome of the public consultation. In principle, the Commission has three months to propose an amendment to Annex XVII of the REACH Regulation, which contains the list of restrictions.
Substance of Very High Concern:
A proposal is submitted
to identify the substance as a Substance of Very High Concern (SVHC). Following identification as a SVHC, the substance may be prioritised for inclusion in the Authorisation list (Annex XIV of the REACH Regulation) and become subject to Authorisation.
If an SVHC is placed on the Authorisation list, companies may send an application to ECHA requesting the Authorisation for specified uses. This process is explained in this guide.

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