REACH, the EU regulation concerning the Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals, entered into force on 1 June 2007.
The aim of REACH is to protect human health and the environment, maintain the competitiveness of the European chemical industry and prevent fragmentation of the internal market. This regulation is applicable in the same way across the 27 Member States of the European Union and in other countries of the European Economic Area (EEA).
It requires manufacturers and importers of substances in quantities greater than one tonne per year to submit a registration to the European Chemical Agency (ECHA).
The European Chemicals Agency will manage one Registration Dossier per substance.
As the European chemical industry is a major economic factor, directly employing 1.8 million people (with a sales turnover of €747 billion in 2007), REACH will impact the European economy as a whole.
The timelines for the various REACH activities are highlighted below (for specific information please refer to the official ECHA website echa.europa.eu).