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British firms will no longer be in compliance with Europe’s Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation & Restriction of Chemicals (REACH) regulation when Britain exits the European Union on March 29, 2019, according to Michel Barnier, Europe’s chief negotiator for the exit. To comply with REACH—a prerequisite for selling chemicals in the EU—U.K. chemical makers will have to transfer substances registered under REACH to a representative in an EU country. U.K. firms have submitted 12,156 registrations under REACH, or 14% of all EU registrations. Each registration contains data on the hazards and risks of a substance a company produces. EU chemical exports to the U.K. were $26.1 billion in 2016, about 4.5% of total EU chemical sales, while exports from the U.K. to the EU totaled $22.3 billion. Barnier’s office is advising U.K. chemical firms to approach the European Chemicals Agency for guidance on how to transfer their REACH registrations.
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