South Korea recently announced that they will be accepting the original registrations for recycled or recovered substances. The Ministry of Environment (MoE) issued this draft amendment to K-REACH on the 14th of June, the amendment will align the regulation with the EU’s approach.

The new rules would allow companies manufacturing or importing recycled or recovered substances into South Korea to do so without the need for a new registration, however, this only applies where the standard manufactured substances are already registered under K-REACH.

In October 2023, the MoE initially proposed this draft amendment and even notified the WTO. However, since then, the amendment had not been implemented and as a result, the ministry has decided to re-propose the changes.

Further details are expected to be published and additional implementation rules are to be provided as the current proposed amendment does not provide any criteria for making judgement of similarity between the recovered or recycled substances and the standard manufactured substances that have been registered.

The draft change was announced on 14 June with public consultation closing on 17 June.

Under K-REACH, for companies manufacturing or importing existing substances (that are not recycled or recovered) in volumes of one tonne/year or more must pre-register them to obtain the grace periods to be able to continue manufacturing or importing them, until the full registration deadline.

The remaining full registration deadlines that depend on the volume of substance being manufactured or imported are:

  • 31 December 2024 for volumes of between 100 and 1000 tonnes
  • 31 December 2027 for volumes of between 10 and 100 tonnes; and
  • 31 December 2030 for low volume substances of between 1 and 10 tonnes.

The latest deadline is approaching, therefore if you are importing an existing substance in volumes between 100 and 1000 tonnes per annum then the registration grace period is coming to an end at the end of this year and consequently, companies must ensure that they have registered their substances prior to 31 December 2024.

Please contact H2 Compliance for any assistance with registering your substances under K-REACH.

 Published June 26, 2024

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