EU REACh, a regulation of the European Union structured in a way to protect human health and the environment from the unacceptable effects of harmful chemicals. It also focusses on replacing the usage of harmful chemicals, which are placed in the EU market. The law came into force on 01 June 2007 and to date, the EU REACh has proven to be well effective in controlling the usage of SVHCs in all the chemical products manufactured/ imported in the EU region. The Regulations covers all the 27 member states of the European Union until 31 December 2020.

The formal exit of Britain (BREXIT) from the EU on 31 December 2020 made all the EU regulations to be ineffective in the UK unless the UK Parliament approves it with or without changes. Thereby the implementation of EU REACh in the UK has ended and the law was brought under UK’s chemicals regulatory regime on 1 January 2021 referring to UK REACh.

As there exists a critical network of supply chain between UK and EU manufacturers, the BREXIT will bring significant implications for companies located in the EU and UK under the domain of chemical substance regulations. All these implications in the UK will now be governed by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) same as ECHA of EU. Thereby the UK Manufacturers/ importers are now required to meet the relevant duties if they are placing their product in the UK market.

If your company is required to be compliant with UK REACh, the role undertaken within EU REACh needs to be changed significantly.

Some points need to be noted if you are a Manufacturer/ Supplier in the UK

1. You will be required to follow the regulations mandated by the UK Parliament such as UK REACh and are not required to register the REACh dossiers to ECHA if you sell chemicals only in the UK.

2. If you supply chemicals in both EU and UK, you would be required to follow both EU & UK REACh rules.

3. If you were supplying chemicals in EEA after the transition period, you would be required to appoint an “Only Representative” to manage your registrations. The same can be carried out through a legal entity located in the EU. Provided the responsible person handling such registrations should be a domicile of EU. UK Manufacturers can appoint an OR in the EU but the UK distributors cannot do the same.

4. If you have already registered a substance in EU REACh, your registration will lapse after the transition period in the EU.

5. The EU REACH registration can be transferred to UK REACH (which also means grandfathering) by notifying Health & Safety Executive (HSE) by 30 April 2021 to continue having access to the UK’s market. i.e Existing UK-held REACh registrants have to notify HSE with basic information within 120 days. The Grandfathering will not incur any fees. But if the registration is newly made under UK law, then it will be subject to HSE registration fees.

6. UK importers from the EU need to ensure the imported substance comes under legitimate UK REACh regulations and also required to notify continuous import from the EU by submitting a Downstream User Import Notification (DUIN)

7. The UK REACh dossiers required will be submitted to HSE via the UK REACh-IT System. Companies are required to create a UK REACH-IT Account to carry out the same.

If you are a UK Manufacturer and are still not clear on how to proceed further to meet the governmental regulations, our compliance team of APA Engineering can provide you a time-bound solution at an affordable cost.


If this regulation is applicable to you and you are interested in knowing more about this topic and available solutions, then schedule a free consult with our experts.