Monday, October 18, 2010

ECHA to Automatically Make REACH Registration Documents Public Without First Checking on CBI

Today the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) announced that it will soon institute a dissemination system in which REACH registration dossiers will be made public without ECHA having to communicate first with companies to check on confidential business information (CBI) claims.  The new system supposedly automatically holds back anything marked as confidential, so in theory no CBI will be released even though ECHA won't be checking first.  Previously ECHA contacted registrants before releasing the information, mostly because there was concern that registrants may not completely understand how to flag their CBI information as CBI in the complex IUCLID dossier creation software.

The rationale for making the change now - besides reducing the burden on ECHA - is that ECHA has made available an IT tool and a series of manuals to help registrants enter the information correctly and to check to ensure their CBI is properly protected.  This dissemination tool is akin to the Technical Completeness Check (TCC) tool that allows REACH registrants to check their dossiers before sending them electronically to ECHA.  The philosophy is that it is better to work out the bugs before sending than to back up technical evaluations after submission.  The TCC tool has been invaluable to registrants.  And they should be quick to use the dissemination tool as well to ensure that only non-confidential information is released publicly.

More information can be found on the ECHA web site. The site includes several links to details and the IUCLID site where current registrants can download the tool.

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