The amended Act on the Registration and Evaluation of Chemical Substances in South Korea (K-REACH) came into force on 1 Jan 2019.


Companies that manufacture or import existing chemicals in South Korea at 1 ton or more per year have an obligation to pre-report between 1 January 2019 and 30 June 2019. Pre-notification requirements include classification and labelling information and anticipated annual volumes being manufactured or imported. An online system of the Korea Environment Corporation (Keco) may be used to fulfill pre-notification requirements. Pre-reporting an existing substance allows a company to continue to manufacture or import it up to the specified registration deadline. If pre-reporting requirements are not fulfilled, manufacture or import of the substance will no longer be permitted from 1 July 2019. Foreign manufacturers that export hazardous chemicals to South Korea may appoint a Korea-based only representative to submit pre-notifications or registrations.


“New” chemicals (not listed on Korean Existing Chemicals List) must be registered prior to manufacture or import where the quantity exceeds 100 kg per year, unless the chemicals may cause significant damage to human health or the environment or where annual volume will exceed the tonnage specified in the Enforcement Decree, published by MoE. New substances manufactured or imported at less than 100 kg per year only require notification to the National Institute of Environmental Research (NIER). It is worth noting that registration requires submission of hazard data, whereas notification is concerned with administrative information.


The revision of K-REACH is expected to result in the registration of approximately 7000 existing substances over the next 12 years. As the pre-reporting deadline approaches, it is important to check if your products fall within the scope or K-REACH and identify your obligations under the amended regulation. This includes pre-reporting of existing substances, tonnage band registration deadlines, changes to simplified registration and confidential business information (CBI) exemptions.


For more information about South Korea chemical compliance, contact Nexreg today!