China Goes Hard on the Handling of Hazardous Chemicals
The latest amendment on China’s Regulations on Safe Management of Hazardous Chemicals has more specific articles on the storage, production, use, import, sales and transportation of hazardous chemicals with the release of the official Catalogue of Priority Hazardous Chemicals for Environment Management on April 10, 2014.
The directive is considered as the most multifaceted chemical regulation in China which includes more than 100 articles and truckloads of secondary measures national standards for this specific law.
Over eight government agencies are tasked to implement this law regulating all existing chemicals in China.
Extent of the Regulation and the Catalogue of Hazardous Chemicals
The law generally provides the rules and standards in the handling of hazardous chemicals.
Hazardous chemicals are defined as chemicals which are corrosive, toxic, can explode, flammable and can inflict injury and harm to the body and the environment.
According to decree 591, all chemicals that meet the GHS criteria classification will be deemed and treated as hazardous chemicals. All chemicals that are listed in the Catalogue of Hazardous Chemicals will have to undergo extra safety precautions and that includes securing operation license, product license, safe use permit, and a few more.
The Catalogue of Hazardous Chemicals (2002) has three parts:
The list of highly toxic chemicals
Dangerous goods list
As well as other chemicals proclaimed hazardous by authorities
There is a more in depth classification of hazardous chemicals which are also in the catalogue and each of these categories entail a different handling procedure. They are:
List of Highly Toxic Chemicals;
List of Explosive Antecedents
Toxic Chemicals Banned for Import and Export
List of 60 Hazardous Chemicals for Priority Management
List of Industrial Products
List of Hazardous Waste;
List of hazardous and toxic chemicals banned for transportation on domestic waterways
Companies and individuals who are participate in any way in the manufacture, importation, stocking, use, trade, and transportation of hazardous chemicals are required to identify under what category their products fall under.
After the right category has been identified, the next step would be to acknowledge the roles and obligations of an entity that handles such chemicals.
Transportation Classification Compliance
Some of the obligations of companies in China who deal with hazardous chemicals in whatever form include the creation of safety evaluation reports, securing a production license and safe use permit, operating license, registration of hazardous chemicals, and a lot more.
License to operate and market hazardous chemicals in China can be acquired from the State Administration of Work Safety. In China, there are three kinds of licenses:
Operating license for distributing, importing, and selling hazardous chemicals
Production license to manufacture hazardous chemicals
Safe use license for those who use hazardous chemicals in order to produce other products