While suppliers in the car sector initially submitted material data in IMDS to meet responsibilities deriving from the ELV Directive's heavy metal prohibition, they may now make more and more use of the data and analyze it for other purposes, such as REACH.

The system has undergone constant modernization over the past 20 years, with 13 major versions to date. The supply chain now has more and newer options for material reporting thanks to modules like the Chemistry Manager. The IMDS community was able to satisfy new legal criteria thanks to the introduction of the Application Codes, the REACH SVHCs, the BPR (Biocidal Product Regulation), and the interface to the SCIP database. Direct data transmission with the Chinese Automotive Material Data System (CAMDS) is now feasible as of 2021. With approximately 95 million datasheets currently contained within 190,000 registered and active companies, IMDS has not only emerged as the industry standard globally for product and material compliance reporting in the automotive sector but also as a cross-sector benchmark for value chain compliance declarations. Additionally, it has evolved into a fully integrated module of OEMs' and suppliers' quality and compliance procedures.

The goal of IMDS has always been to collect data along the whole auto supply chain while preventing duplicate data insertion for IMDS users. This refers to the supply chain's utilization of IMDS data (MDS references). As a result, IMDS has continuously been improved to respond to new environmental concerns while reducing costs and efforts. Consequently, the IMDS Terms of Use are now being revised by the IMDS Steering Committee and supplier representatives from the various organizations to permit the utilization of IMDS data for the currently anticipated legal requirements and use cases.

Data usage for issues like the Eco-design for Sustainable Products Regulation (ESPR), which includes the Digital Product Passports (DPP), Life Cycle Assessments (LCA), Environment, Social, Governance (ESG), and other recently upcoming sustainability topics, will be taken into account in the revised IMDS Terms of Use, among other things.

The new ESPR plan, which was released on March 30, 2022, creates a framework for establishing eco-design standards for particular product categories to considerably enhance their circularity, energy efficiency, and other environmental sustainability elements. For practically all kinds of physical commodities sold on the EU market, it will make it possible to specify performance and information criteria. Sector- and product-specific regulations are to be formulated and converted into legal requirements via delegated acts by the existing draught Regulation's structure.

Since no such delegated act for whole automobiles has yet been anticipated, it is also unknown exactly how the DPP would be implemented in the automotive sector. However, Article 7 of the present ESPR draught lays out generic data standards that apply to all product categories.

When these criteria are compared to the present IMDS data, a significant amount of data fields are overlapped. Therefore, it can be said that IMDS data can already be used to meet the majority of the impending requirements.

But if it turns out that collecting more data is necessary, the IMDS process for system improvements will be applied. The implementation of new data fields and functionalities into IMDS would follow any agreement between vehicle manufacturers and their supplier associations. It could be necessary to get additional data outside the system.

In conclusion, IMDS is already prepared to support compliance with upcoming requirements, such as on the Digital Product Passport. This is another illustration of IMDS's flexibility as a product and material data system, which uses synergies and tried-and-true procedures to lower investment costs for IMDS participants.

Reference: https://public.mdsystem.com/en/web/imds-public-pages/imds-news

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