As announced previously, The Chinese Ministry of Environmental Protection (MEP) published the six supporting draft documents of 'China REACH' in April seeking stakeholders' reviews and comments. The purpose of these supporting documents is to guide the related industries in complying with this new and complex chemical legislation. After receiving more than 500 suggestions and comments, the MEP has officially published the updated final versions of the six supporting documents after taking into account more than half of the feedback it received. The six guidance documents published are:
- Guidance for New Chemical Substance Notification;
- Specification for Supervision, Administration and Inspection of New Chemical Substances;
- Regular Notification Form of new chemical substances and instruction form;
- Simplified Notification Form of new chemical substances and instruction form;
- Scientific Research Application Form of new chemical substances and instruction form;
- First Activities report form and form completion instructions;
When comparing the differences between the draft and officially released guidance documents, the terms in the updated 'Specification of Supervision, Administration and Inspection of New Chemical Substances' document have been modified to be more in tune with the inspection system of China. The application forms have largely remained unchanged.
However, there has been an essential change in the Guidance for New Chemical Substance Notification. The draft document required the registered capital of the Chinese legal entity, which would notify the new substance, to be at least 1 million RMB (110,000 euro). In the final version, the requirement for the requirement capital had increased to 3 million RMB (330,000 euro) in order to avoid so-called 'shell companies'. This change could become a barrier to many Chinese SME companies to act as the 'only representative' (OR) of their non-CN partners to carry out the new substance notification on their behalf. Furthermore, the change also prevents some consultancies to be able to act as the OR of the Non-CN manufacturer/trader due to their limited capital.