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Are you ready for EU Poison Centre Notification Format?

Consumers and workers come into daily contact with hazardous chemicals, and although they are expected to be used according to safe-use instructions, unintentional exposure may happen: ingestion, skin contact, inhalation, etc. In those cases, emergency professionals need rapid product identification, information about the chemicals contained and its hazardous properties, all these in order to facilitate the identification of the correct treatment and to avoid further damage.

And this is exactly what a poison centre does: it provides medical advice to citizens and healthcare professionals on health emergencies arising from exposure to hazardous chemicals or to other toxic agents; such as medicines, plants, bites and stings. Poison centres in the EU answer calls for support daily and around the clock.

On 22 March 2017, the Regulation (EU) nº 2017/542 was published, adding the Annex VIII, about the harmonised information relating to emergency health response. According to the ECHA, “It’s about harmonisation, and harmonisation brings synergies and efficiencies”. It was designed to regulate all hazardous mixture notifications (mixtures classified with health and/or physical hazards) within the EU, and established two new concepts related to chemical safety:

  • A harmonised information format file: a common format file which will gradually replace the current national requirements in force.
  • A Unique Formula Identifier (UFI): a unique code for each product which will be added on the label.

This new system, although efficient and beneficial in the long term, also implies a new complex notification process for companies, which will have to notify their products in the official language of each country in which they are marketed, pay different national taxes, etc. Providing harmonized information will certainty improve emergency health response, but the number of notifications is expected to significantly increase, and the producers and manufacturers who have started to work with the new system have already experience workability issues such us:

  • Insufficient time prior to deadline to assimilate notification tools.
  • Regular product variations that will lead to multiple and frequent changes of UFI for the same product.
  • Problems working with the ECHA Submission portal: navigation is complicated, too many clicks; it is not always directly clear if you made a wrong input, since validation is only available at the end of the process; notification via Guided Dossier Preparation took approx. 2 – 3 hours for a single product.

To overcome these inefficiencies and for the harmonized notification system to be truly useful for society, but also viable for companies, experts believe that there is a need for managed automation that minimizes the impact of:

  • Tens of thousands of products to be notified.
  • Frequent formulation changes. Partly own initiative, partly by raw material suppliers or driven by legislation changes.
  • Not feasible to do notifications & updates manually. Notifications must be generated in bulk.
  • Automation requires standardization. The solution must work for thousands of notifications at a time.

Time is running out, since the new harmonized notification process shall apply from 1 January 2021, after its publication in the Official Journal of the European Union. That is why we have updated CHEMETER, a reliable SDS authoring software which provides you with country specific legislation, up-to-date regulatory information, continuous new features development and professional assistance. It is also a friendly modular software which accommodates each company’s needs considering the country, sector and the aim of the company. It creates an extended range of documents; such as SDS, e-SDS, labels, dangerous goods documents and sector specific paperwork. It is one of the highest implemented software solutions worldwide, and now in addition, we have updated it to provide it with an additional module that issues automatic notifications in a few minutes.

The new module is specially designed to help users to comply with new poison Centre Notification Requirements for Hazardous Mixtures in the EU. It automatically creates PCN dossiers for harmonised notifications. Just in a few minutes, users will get the file with all the necessary documentation: automatic UFI code generation, toxicological information, complete chemical composition, etc. It is a simplified process, which indicates step by step in a simple way the data that the user needs to complete it. In a few clicks, users will get the file to notify all products.  It is a significant time saver compared to the 2 or 3 hours it would take to generate the Poison Center Notification (PCN) format for a single product using the official portal.

You can get more information about CHEMETER and all Siam services on our website https://www.siam-it.com/en/.

BCF calls for further changes to UK REACH after small step in the right direction

The British Coatings Federation has welcomed recent proposed changes to the forthcoming UK REACH regime as a small but welcome step in the right direction. However, it has also warned that these changes alone will not be enough to prevent the coatings sector – and wider chemicals industry – from being hit hard financially under the new post-Brexit regime. This is because it does still not resolve the underlying, inherent problems with the proposed UK REACH system namely duplication of the EU REACH system and re-registration of all substances in a new database. It is this wholesale re-registration – including full data dossiers duplicating registrations already held in the EU REACH system – which will prove so bureaucratic, burdensome, and costly to business.

The easiest and seemingly best way to avoid this wholesale duplication would be for the UK and EU to negotiate a data-sharing agreement as part of the ongoing Free Trade Agreement talks. This would potentially mean the UK regulator would maintain access to data already registered in the EU REACH database and avoid it having to be re-registered in the new UK REACH system. The BCF fully supports the UK Government’s attempts to achieve this result as part of the FTA talks.

However, if that data-sharing outcome is not achieved as part of an FTA, the Government needs to go further and initiate greater changes to the proposed UK REACH system. The time extension for substance registrations simply spreads the cost of the registration requirements over a longer period: it does not reduce the overall cost to business. Those additional costs will still make it uneconomic for some lower quantity substances to be registered in the UK REACH database, making them unavailable in the UK and leaving UK companies at a significant disadvantage to their EU counterparts. Alternatively, UK businesses will have to take on the registration costs themselves to maintain access to crucial substances, again putting them at a competitive disadvantage.

Tom Bowtell, CEO of the British Coatings Federation said:

“Along with others we have been actively and positively engaged in conversations with the UK Government for well over a year. It is good to see that the Government has listened to the genuine concerns industry has raised and amended their plans for UK REACH. However, while we welcome the changes as a step in the right direction, sadly we do not believe the scale of the amendments are enough to offset the large costs and inconveniences UK business will suffer at the hands of UK REACH system as it stands.

“We hope that a data-sharing agreement on chemicals can be negotiated between the UK and EU as part of an FTA, and fully support the Government as it continues to work for that outcome: it would seem to be the most practical solution to this problem. However, if such an agreement does not come to pass then we hope the Government will continue to engage with, and listen to, the continued concerns of industry. Ultimately, we hope they realise we are not crying wolf over the impact of UK REACH on companies using chemicals like the paint, coatings and printing ink industries, and agree to make further amendments to their plans that will mitigate the effect of the new UK regulatory system on business.”

BCF gives evidence on UK REACH to House of Lords Committee

British Coatings Federation Ltd
Westwood Way, Westwood Business Park Coventry
CV4 8HS
www.coatings.org.uk
info@bcf.co.uk
Registered in England 745398

On the 7th of October 2020 Tom Bowtell, CEO of the British Coatings Federation gave evidence to the House of Lords EU Environment Sub-Committee on the subject of Government plans for UK REACH.
In his comments to the Committee he explained to Peers how UK REACH, as currently configured, will significantly and negatively impact on the coatings and printing inks sector, as well as the chemicals industry more widely.

His evidence stressed that if the UK Government fails to negotiate data-sharing as part of a chemicals annexe to the EU Free Trade Agreement, the resulting need to register chemical substances into a separate UK REACH database will cost industry over £1 billion. This would put UK Coatings manufacturing – and sectors further downstream like automotive and aerospace that its members supply – at a significant competitive disadvantage to their EU competitors.

During the Committee evidence session Tom also:

• Highlighted the risk of the UK losing Foreign Direct Investment if it is no longer an attractive place to manufacturer chemical-based products like coatings; • Expressed concern that the extra bureaucracy and cost of a mirrored UK REACH system will have a significant impact on business, especially smaller companies and downstream users who have not had to engage with EU REACH on registrations before now; • Welcomed plans to extend the registration period for substances into UK REACH from two to up to six years as a step in the right direction. However, while this measure is of some help it does not solve the underlying problems of a duplicate REACH regime. He therefore called on the Government to think again about the structure of UK REACH from 1st January 2021 if it cannot negotiate data-sharing as part of an FTA; • Reiterated a major worry of BCF members that, even with an extended registration period, many small volume substances might be deemed economically unviable to register in UK REACH due to the fact the UK is ten times smaller than the EU market. This could mean these small volume substances being lost to UK manufacturers entirely; • Drew attention to Chemical Watch’s recent survey on that subject which reported that 27% of EU companies and 7% of UK companies were considering not re-registering substances in UK REACH due to cost or complexity; • Pointed out that the proposed fee structure for UK REACH registration is the same as that for EU REACH, even though the UK market is 10 times smaller than that of the EU. If fees are to be levied for registrations into UK REACH they should be more proportionate to the size of the market; • Bought to the Peers’ attention that industry is still awaiting detailed guidance on UK REACH to be published by the Government, leaving businesses with little time to truly get to grips with new regulations;
British Coatings Federation Ltd Westwood Way, Westwood Business Park Coventry, CV4 8HS www.coatings.org.uk info@bcf.co.uk Registered in England 745398

• And asked whether the Government will publish its economic and environmental impact assessments for UK REACH to allow for more comprehensive debate on the subject.

Commenting on the evidence session, Tom Bowtell said:

“I was grateful to be able to give evidence to the House of Lords. It was an important opportunity to make sure the Committee Members understood how UK REACH is going to impact on downstream users of chemicals in the UK – like the coatings and printing inks sector – as well as on the chemicals industry more widely. Additional costs and reduced availability of substances from which to manufacture are going to be genuine consequences of the current plans for the UKs new chemicals regime. We therefore urged the Committee to prompt the Government to publish its economic impact assessment of its plans for UK REACH so that we can see what assumptions it is making its decisions upon.

“With the clock ticking down until the Brexit Transition Period ends the UK Government needs to recognise that – unless data-sharing with the EU can be agreed as part of an FTA – the way UK REACH is currently configured will hit industry hard. There is a real risk the extra regulatory burden will lead to a reduction in foreign direct investment to the UK: moreover, the extra costs and added bureaucracy will hit SMEs and downstream users like those in the coatings and printing inks sectors particularly heavily. We need to see more radical changes made to UK REACH – beyond the extension to registration periods already agreed – to mitigate the effects on business.”

British Coatings Federation welcomes FTA but calls for more significant changes to UK REACH

The British Coatings Federation has welcomed the news of a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between the UK and EU. Despite the lateness of the decision, an FTA will mean, among other things, that BCF members will be able to benefit from tariff-free trade with the EU in future. This at least will ensure the coatings and printing inks sectors across Europe will not now be hit by new tariff costs of an estimated £100 million.

However, while there is talk of a Chemicals Annexe being included in the deal, it is not yet clear this will include the key data-sharing clauses the UK wanted. If this has not been agreed today, we hope that data-sharing might still be able to be negotiated as an ‘add-on’ at some point in 2021.

The 1st January 2021 sees the introduction of the UK’s new independent chemicals regulations. UK REACH is a direct copy of the original, EU REACH, a piece of legislation widely regarded as being one of the most – if not the most – burdensome in the world. If data-sharing has not been agreed as part of the FTA, UK REACH will now require the registration with full data dossiers of all chemical substances being used in the country to be put into a new database. This process is going to cost the chemicals industry an estimated £1 billion plus, a figure not disputed by the UK Government. It is also likely to mean some substances will not be registered in the new UK database at all for reasons of cost, leaving many UK manufacturers in a position where they have to make do without, change their formulations, or take on the registration costs themselves.

In addition, UK-based companies wanting to export to the EU will not only have to comply with UK REACH but continue to adhere to EU REACH rules too. This will become more complicated if the UK and EU chemicals regimes start to diverge in future.

Commenting on the deal, Tow Bowtell, CEO of the BCF, said:

“We welcome the fact a Free Trade Agreement has been concluded. Businesses are going to be hit significantly by Brexit and at least this FTA means some additional costs, such as tariffs, are now going to be avoided.

However, the FTA agreed appears extremely ‘thin’ and basic. The reality is this is a ‘hard’ Brexit, with significant extra costs and burdens placed on UK industry as a result. BCF members and businesses across the country will still have to deal with new customs and borders controls, as well as delays to goods and raw materials caused by those additional procedures. This will make UK companies less competitive, having to spend more time and money dealing with bureaucracy that has not been there for decades.

In particular, we have serious concerns about the way UK REACH will duplicate the onerous EU REACH, despite the UK chemicals market being only 1/10th the size of the EU. It seems as though the FTA negotiations failed to secure a data-sharing agreement on chemicals. If that is indeed the case, we either need to see further negotiations in 2021 to try and reach that agreement as an ‘add-on’ or Defra will need to urgently review how UK REACH is going to work. Proceeding as currently planned will cost businesses – including downstream users like those in the coatings, printing inks and wallcoverings sectors – over a billion pounds with absolutely zero added benefits. We will continue, as a matter of priority, to make this case for change into 2021.”

Coatings Care Awards finalists announced by the BCF

British Coatings Federation (BCF) announces finalists for Coatings Care, a voluntary programme which provides an opportunity for members to benchmark their environmental performance against 45 KPIs. For additional details on the programme and why this initiative is important, click here.

The Coatings Care Overall Best Performer Award is presented to the company that has demonstrated best in class performance across a range of key performance indicators, including VOC emissions, energy consumption, waste and recycling, and accident and incident statistics.

Our shortlisted companies for this award are:

  • AkzoNobel Decorative Paints (Ashington)
  • AkzoNobel Industrial Coatings (Deeside)
  • Pronto Industrial Paints (Chesterfield)
  • Pulse Printing Products (Bristol)
  • Teal & Mackrill Ltd (Hull)

The Coatings Care Progress Award is presented to the company that has made the most significant year on year improvement in its performance on the same health, safety and environmental criteria.

Our shortlisted companies for this award are:

  • Crown (Darwen)
  • Dacrylate (Kirkby-in-Ashfield)
  • Rustins
  • Steyport (Blackburn)
  • Sun Chemical

 

Tom Bowtell, BCF Chief Executive commented “The programme is a great way for member companies to compare and understand their relative environmental performance and look for ways to continuously improve. Well done to the finalists of our awards and I look forward to announcing the winners on the 6th of November.”

Creating a network of coatings industry ambassadors to engage with schools and universities

The British Coatings Federation has partnered with the Surface Coatings Group of the Royal Society of Chemistry (rsc.li/surfacecoatings) and PRA (https://www.pra-world.com/) to create a national network of ambassadors for the coatings industry, with the training delivered by Cogent Skills.

Our goal is to equip Coatings Ambassadors with the skills and materials to run sessions at schools and universities, to explain the contribution the industry makes to the economy and society, as well as the varied roles and opportunities within it.

Following two successful events at the end of 2019, July saw the first virtual Coatings Ambassador training, with a diverse group of attendees from AkzoNobel, BASF, Dacrylate, Imerys, Manchester University and Venator and had an international flavour with delegates joining from Brazil and the USA.

Through our ambassador programme and the Coatings Careers Hub, our online forum with vacancies and career resources, we are hopeful that we can encourage the next generation to see the world of opportunities in our industry.

We would like to thank both the companies and individuals who took part and who are now part of an important and growing network. Whilst there is currently a shortage of skilled staff and an ageing workforce, we hope that the Coatings Ambassador programme will help make a real difference.

For more information about the programme, and future training dates, visit https://coatingscareershub.com/ambassadors/ 

Frequently Asked Questions of the KKDIK Regulation (Turkey REACH)

With the pre-registration deadline for KKDIK quickly approaching on the 31st of December 2020, we at CIRS are busy monitoring the latest updates and preparing you to fulfil all the necessary obligations. Completion of the pre-registration obligation provides you with a grace period for registration until the end of 2023 after which all chemical substances manufactured/imported to Turkey in one ton/year must be fully registered.

To make this process easier for you, we have gathered all the most frequently asked questions from our practical experience to-date with the KKDIK regulation.

  1. If pre-registration is completed within C&L notification, then why should a foreign enterprise do the pre-registration themselves and not through a TR-importer?

If a TR-importer does C&L notification, they select the role of ‘importer’. The pre-registration will also have been completed under an importer. This may result in the following scenarios (a) higher cost for registration (b) the TR-importer may not do the registration and choose a supplier which has registered their substance with an OR (c) If the TR-importer does the registration, then they can buy the substance from any supplier they want as they will have the registration number. The result is an overall loss of commercial power in Turkey

  1. How is the pre-registration/registration of a polymer processed according to the KKDIK regulation?

Article 4 (hh) of KKDIK: Polymer means a substance consisting of molecules characterised by the sequence of one or more types of monomer units, distributed over a range of molecular weights wherein differences in the molecular weight are primarily attributable to differences in the number of monomer units and comprising of the following:

1) A simple weight majority of molecules containing at least three monomer units which are covalently bound to at least one other monomer unit or other reactant; and

2) Less than a simple weight majority of molecules of the same molecular weight

According to the KKDIK regulation, polymers are themselves exempt from registration. In the same way as EU REACH, it is the monomer unit and any other substances which are present in 1 ton/year or greater which require pre-registration/registration.

  1. For C&L notification of chemicals delivered in mixtures, does each individual substance require notification?

The way a mixture is classified is if the mixture contains a substance which is classified as hazardous and it is above the appropriate concentration limit (varies depending on the substance in question), then the mixture is classified as hazardous. If a mixture meets hazardous criteria, then C&L notification is required. Classification is the same as EU REACH.

  1. Is it possible to transfer completed pre-registrations?

Currently, the online platform for submitting pre-registration/registration dossiers is updating. This is the KKS tool (IUCLID and REACH-IT hybrid). This may take some time to complete. The OR transfer function will be available after the update is complete.

  1. According to KKDIK, all substances manufactured/imported into Turkey in 1 ton/year should be pre-registered. If my substance is less than 1 ton/year can it still be pre-registered?

Yes, it is still possible to pre-register substances which are less than 1 ton/year. This will also cover future business if annual tonnages rise to the 1 ton/year mark or above in the period of three years. If pre-registration is not completed before Dec. 31st 2020 and tonnages rise above the 1 ton/year threshold, then full registration will be required which will be far costlier.

  1. Is there a system of reporting dispatches into Turkey after pre-registration is completed?

Currently, there is not such a system in place for reporting dispatches

  1. When dealing with a mixture, if a raw material is pre-registered under the supplier, can the pre-registration be used by the formulator of the mixture?

This is the decision of the supplier who obtained the pre-registration number and whether he grants access to the formulator to use the pre-registration number.

  1. Who may register in the case of a multinational company/group companies?

This depends on whether each company within the same parent company are defined as ‘registrant’ according to Article 4(ü) of the KKDIK regulation. If multiple companies are under the same legal entity, then just one company needs to act as the registrant. In the case of a separate legal entity, such as a sister company, they should also register.

  1. How are alloys registered?

According to the KKDIK regulation, alloys are treated in the same way as mixtures. Therefore, each individual substance i.e. each metallic substance must be registered individually.

  1. If the tonnage band is expected to increase in the future, can the higher tonnage band be registered under instead?

Companies may register under higher tonnage bands if they expect their annual tonnage to increase. The higher registration fee must also be paid. Furthermore, the registration dossier must include all the required information for the higher tonnage band as data requirements differ between tonnage bands.

  1. If a company is importing a mixture to Turkey, how can they find out if the individual components have already been registered in Turkey by the supplier, if the supplier is refuses to share the information?

The options are to (a) Contact the formulator where the supplier is not the same entity as the formulator. The formulator may be more willing to share the composition information. (b) Take analytical measurements to determine the composition of the mixture or (c) Find an alternative supplier of the same substance who is willing to share the information

  1. Our substance only has a CAS No. and no EC No. is available, can we process pre-registration only with CAS No.?

Yes, there is no problem to process pre-registration without EC No.

  1. We are a distributor located outside Turkey, can we appoint an OR and process pre-registration?

No. It’s same as EU REACH. Only foreign manufacturers can appoint an OR and process pre-registration.

  1. Is there a definition of “new chemical” in the KKDIK regulation?

No. The regulation is only about the substance. There is no specific definition of Existing Chemical and New Chemical. CIRS suggests companies to process pre-registration of all their substances.

  1. If the manufacturer completes the pre-registration, can the local importer take C&L notification with this pre-registration No.?

No, if the importer processes C&L Notification, they have to firstly complete pre-registration by themselves.

  1. Our product contains a raw material which has not been reacted. The tonnage of this raw material is more than 1 ton/year. Are we still required to process pre-registration of this raw material?

It’s similar as EU REACH. If the raw material is not residual on purpose, it can be regarded as an impurity and pre-registration will not be required.

  1. We are a Turkish legal entity which owns several factories in different sites, how shall we process the pre-registration?

According to KKDIK regulation, registrant shall be the natural or legal person in Turkey. If the company has one individual legal entity which own different factories, and the factories have no individual legal entity, only one pre-registration is enough, and all factories will be covered.

If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to contact us:

Julie Harrington, Regulatory Affairs Consultant

julie@cirs-reach.com

+353 0 87 197 2618

https://www.linkedin.com/in/julie-harrington-14270a160/

Learn how to meet your SCIP Database requirements with Yordas’ new e-learning course

Are you a producer, importer or supplier of articles based in the EU? Did you know that from 5th January 2021, products containing SVHC on the REACH Candidate List will have to be registered in the new SCIP database?

Yordas Group have recently launched an e-learning course titled: A Practical Guide to the SCIP Database. The course will show you how to create a SCIP-compatible dataset and comply with your obligations.

The idea behind SCIP is that to successfully develop a circular economy and enable recycling, hazardous chemicals must be removed from materials. Therefore, if you are a producer, importer or supplier of articles based in the EU, you will probably have obligations to notify information to SCIP.

The course is hosted by Yordas’ SCIP expert Dr Sandra Meijer and includes practical exercises and demonstrations of the IT systems for the SCIP database. By completing this course, you will gain the knowledge, skills and insight required to meet your obligations under SCIP.

Enrol in the course now to be ready for the January 2021 deadline: https://www.yordasinsight.eu/courses/A-Practical-Guide-to-the-SCIP-database

More information about SCIP Database: https://www.yordasgroup.com/scip-database

Lisam Systems: towards the Full Digitisation of Hazard Information

One of the many challenges faced by chemical manufacturers and buyers is the availability and relevance of the safety documents provided by their suppliers. More often than not, suppliers SDS are either missing, not compliant or not updated in a timely manner. These failures to comply constitute a significant safety risk for manufacturers and chemical downstream users and jeopardize the HSE compliance efforts of countless companies.

Lisam’s purpose is to respond to this challenge by facilitating hazard communication through the digitisation and centralisation of your SDS.

HOW?

To achieve this goal, we have developed software solutions which will not only address the compliance and quality issues of the received SDS but will also enable the communication of hazard information from your suppliers and to customers.


Our solutions include:

  • Automated document request (update request, missing or wrong SDS information);
  • Automated assessment of SDS template quality with our SDS Robot;
  • Digitisation of supplier SDS with our SDS Robot;
  • Eased processing of digital SDS to author your own compliant documents;
  • Automated distribution of the authored documents to your own customers;
  • Simplified generation of safety documents based on digital SDS for downstream users.
  • Straightforward comparison and validation of the content of the supplier SDS.
  • Automated content matching with our standard phrases catalogue
  • Eased processing of digital SDS to author your own compliant documents (in multiple formats and languages)

 

What’s in it for you:

+ ensured compliance
+ enhanced time efficiency
+ increased productivity

Learn more: info.uk@lisam.com

Metal Recycles Forever

80% of all metal ever produced is still in circulation today.

Recycling and sustainability

The UK metal packaging industry, along with its European counterparts, spearheads the continual drive to not only produce the most material efficient metal packaging possible, but also to provide packaging that offers other significant benefits such as significantly reducing food waste and producing paint cans that are still fully recyclable despite contamination from paint.

 

The industry’s recycling infrastructure, developed over many decades, has resulted in a UK recycling rate for steel packaging of 71 per cent and aluminium (primarily beverage cans) of 76 per cent.

 

The sector’s target of a 100 per cent recycling rate for metal is a real possibility thanks to metal’s easy separation from the waste stream, either by consumers at home or by magnetic extraction and eddy currents further down the line. And it’s a fact that all metal collected for recycling, is recycled and is reused.

 

Metal is officially recognised as a permanently available material (British Standard 8905) – a material whose inherent properties are not changed by repeatedly being recycling into new products. Metal can be recycled an infinite number of times with no loss of quality, and it’s estimated that 80 per cent of all metal ever produced is still in circulation today.

 

Metal’s sustainability credentials are captured in just three words: Metal Recycles Forever.

 

“Metal can be recycled again and again with no loss of quality, and when it is recycled it saves significant amounts of primary raw materials, energy and CO2. Once primary ore is converted into metal, as long as we look after it, we will have it forever.  This infinite recyclability is key to reducing the pressure on the world’s natural resources and why recycling metal is so important. Our vision is for a 100 percent metal packaging recycling rate,” said Robert Fell, Director and CEO, MPMA.

Raw Material Price Increases Pile on Pressure

Sharp price increases for epoxy resins and supply bottlenecks are now adding to the difficulties of paint and coatings manufacturers in the UK and across Europe, and further compounding the already existing pressures caused by the Covid-19 pandemic and resulting disruption. On top of this some manufacturers are also reporting additional friction being caused by the new trading conditions the UK has with the EU where 60% of the UK industry’s raw materials are sourced.

Epoxy resin prices have risen sharply since the latter part of 2020 while polyester resin prices are also well up. In particular, recent data from the German Paint and Printing Inks Association show very significant increases for epoxy resins – an important binding agent for many paints and coatings – of as much as 60% in recent months. UK paint manufacturers are also seeing sharp increases and with some suppliers to the industry now also resorting to monthly price increases.

Strong demand from certain markets is driving up prices while an unexpectedly rapid V shaped recovery in China is also fuelling demand for these essential raw materials. In addition, the situation is being compounded by a current global shortage of containers which has led to a sharp rise in transport costs from Asia to Europe thus further restricting supplies to Europe.

Similar problems are affecting the market for polyester resins with factory closures in Singapore and Sweden as well an explosion at a factory in China adding to the difficulties. This in turn has resulted in suppliers diverting product to their local markets rather than Europe, further pushing up prices. There are also problems with bisphenol-A with stocks being diverted to polycarbonates. Neopentyl glycol and methanol are also both reported to be in short supply with road haulier problems creating delays in some cases and with higher shipping costs likely as we go into 2021.

This complex mix of higher demand, capacity and supply problems together with restricted availability of transport resources is increasing uncertainty in the market and driving up raw material prices sharply. On top of this, the coatings industry in the UK is faced with additional non-tariff costs related to the new UK customs arrangements with the EU for both raw material imports, as well as exports and imports of finished paints, coatings and printing inks.

Safety, Regulatory and Safe Handling of Chemicals

Safety, Regulatory and Safe Handling of Chemicals are topics that constantly challenge the global Chemicals industry at all times.
There is a need for companies to understand the correct regulatory, classification, symbols and pictograms.  It’s not just enough to write SDSs ‘in-house’ without employing proper tools or knowledge resources or simply copy-pasting safety data sheets from competitors, suppliers or from the internet as these could be quite misleading!  Yet another requirement for companies aspiring to get various types of Quality, Compliance, other certifications is to have proper systems in place including those of Safety, Regulatory and Safe handling of Chemicals regardless of being hazardous, non-hazardous chemicals or both.

 SIAM SL, Spain based in the world famous La Rioja wine region of Spain develops IT Solutions and Software for the automatic Classification, Formulation and Authoring of Safety Data Sheets for single substances and mixtures falling under CLP and GHS regulations.  SIAM provides a highly versatile software (CHEMETER) for preparing multilingual SDS in over 55 world regulatory/languages and multilingual product labelling and provides SDS AREA, a platform for easy distribution and management of Safety Data Sheets.
Both CHEMETER and SDS AREA solutions offer major time-savings to companies over traditional methods of authoring SDSs as well as using old software since both solutions come with latest features suited to the current and evolving safety regulations in over 55 countries.   CHEMETER software is easy to understand, open and flexible and built-up in a modular fashion to suit your exact needs at any given time.

1000+ clients across 45 countries that use CHEMETER software and SDS AREA include a variety of manufacturers, exporters, importers, distributors, traders, MSME’s, OEM’s into all kinds of Chemicals, API’s and Plastics and coming from all walks of industry including CASE, Petrochemicals, Pigments, Resins & Additives, Dyes & Dispersions, Textile and Leather Chemicals, Cleaning & Construction Chemicals, Lubes & Greases, Cosmetics, Solvents, Rubber, Plastics, Detergents, Flavours & Fragrances, Water Treatment Chemicals, Agro Chemicals, Monomers and Polymers, Resins and more.

Come 1st November 2020 and CHEMETER software will offer its users an additional module specially designed to help users manage the EU’s new regulation of UFI (Unique Formula Identifier) Code in order to comply with the EU’s new Poison Centre Notification (PCN) requirements for hazardous mixtures being supplied into the EU.   The module automatically creates PCN dossiers for harmonised notifications and within a few minutes, users can upload files with all necessary documentation, automatic UFI code generation, toxicological information, complete chemical composition, etc.   It is a simplified and easy step-by-step process and significant time-saver compared to the 2-3 hours odd it otherwise takes to generate PCN for a single product using the official portal.

You can get more information about SIAM’s Regulatory IT Solutions on https://www.siam-it.com or by sending an email to:

Nirav Banker
(UK, Asia & Middle-East Business Head)

Email: n.banker@siam-it.com
UK Mobile: (+44) 747 096 4875

What a Difference a Year (Hopefully) Makes

Most people on the planet were glad to see the back of 2020. The authors of the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle might have glossed over the sheer awfulness with something like ‘2020 was a terrible year,’ and left it at that. Tempted as I might be to do the same, it is worth noting again just how resilient BCF members have been over the past twelve months.

Resilience firstly in reacting to Covid: keeping production going; keeping staff employed and adapting work practices to keep them safe; and playing their part in helping make products used in the response to the virus and by taking a lead in their communities. However, while the overall picture was not as bad as for other industries, we know some members were hit harder than others – decorative paint sales continue to soar as lockdown Britain’s enforced love affair with DIY carries on into the third, and hopefully last ever national lockdown, whilst industrial paints and printing inks suffer as other industries reeled under the economic contraction, not least aerospace and automotive.

But also, secondly, resilience in preparing for the UK’s new trading relationship with the EU, against a backdrop of delay to decisions and uncertainty of outcome. We know from participation in our various Brexit webinars, in our committee meetings, and from regular communications with members just how much time and resource has been put into making sure the coatings industry is ready to deal with all the new rules and regulations.

Both of those issues – Covid and Brexit – will continue to hamper business well into 2021. Despite the rolling out of vaccines across the country, it seems likely we will be in some form of lockdown until Easter, and maybe continue to have restrictions in place for even longer. Bailouts from government will help mitigate the worst effects to the economy but members operating in the industrial and printing ink sectors will be likely still feeling negative effects for some time.

Likewise, although the UK has left the EU and the transition period has ended, Brexit will still be a 2021 issue. There will no doubt be a period of teething problems to overcome as industry adapts to the new rules and regulations, not least at the ports and in dealing with customs in the short-term, and in the medium term through dealing with chemicals regulations both in the UK and as a ‘third country’ exporting to the EU. Once things settle down, and we can plan ahead with a little more certainty, companies will have to evaluate the impact of those rules on their business. At the same time, there will be continued FTA negotiations with the USA, Australia and New Zealand, as well as other countries we have recently signed continuity agreements with.  We have to look for and benefit from trading and regulatory opportunities from leaving the EU, otherwise it will only have been a damage limitation exercise.

2021 is likely to also be a year focused heavily on the environment. The UK presidency of the UN Climate Change Conference – COP26 – delayed from last year, will take place in Glasgow in November. The Government will want to place itself as a world-leader in all things green ahead of that and we can expect a raft of announcements and legislation on environmental policies. The introduction of a carbon tax of some kind is almost a certainty and this is something we at BCF will keep a close eye on – along with other business organisations. We all want to play our part in improving the environment, and a key area where BCF hopes it can add value is helping to solve the challenge of how to improve the environmental impact on leftover decorative paint, 98% of which is landfilled or incinerated. We have a vision to radically improve this, through our voluntary PaintCare initiative.  However, with business hurting from Covid and Brexit, and already having to cope with new green taxes like that on plastic packaging, we need to make sure solutions are proportionate for the times.

Here at BCF we will continue to provide many events and resources online although we hope – as I am sure everyone else does – that we might be able to see each other in person again, at least in the Autumn. Our lobbying efforts will be heavily focused on the UK’s transition from the EU, not least around seeking amendments to UK REACH to reduce the anticipated costs to business of the new scheme. As always, we are here to provide regulatory support to BCF members, and to generally promote the industry within Government, Parliament and the wider public.

Exhibitors

Company NameStand

Chemical Inspection and Regulation Service Ltd (CIRS)

121

Lisam Systems

BZ120

SIAM S.L.

136

Yordas Group

106