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Swiss Chemicals Legislation: An Overview

DOI https://doi.org/10.21552/icrl/2018/2/5

Dag Kappes, Olivier Depallens


Switzerland is a follower of the EU chemicals legislation due to its close trade relations and interest in a high level of protection for human health and the environment. However, Switzerland as a non-EEA member needs to find solutions for elements of REACH that cannot reasonably be introduced by a small country, such as a comprehensive registration scheme for substances, as is possible for the EU with its 28 member states and half a billion inhabitants. In addition, Switzerland's own registrations and decisions would inevitably lead to trade barriers. The rapid development of the EU chemicals legislation requires smart solutions and fast autonomous adaptations. Switzerland plans to introduce the ‘no data - no market’ principle for substances on the Swiss market that are not registered under REACH. The envisaged solution is a pragmatic compromise that requires data only for substances for which the necessary data for self-regulation by the manufacturer may not be available. With this approach, comparatively few resources can ensure a high level of protection and prevent trade barriers.

Dr Dag Kappes is scientific officer in the REACH and Risk Management section of the Division of Chemical Products at the Swiss Federal Office of Public Health (FOPH). Olivier Depallens is head of the REACH and Risk Management section of the Division of Chemical Products at the FOPH. For correspondence: <mailto:dag.kappes@bag.admin.ch>.

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