From an Article on EBN about REACH enforcement and penalties.

The European Chemical Agency (ECHA) is the main body responsible for registrations and inquiries concerning particular substances used by the various applicant companies. If the only incentive was the betterment of the health and safety of human beings and the environment, the number of applicants for registration would be much fewer than it is today. Like any rule or regulation, those who are subject to the pertinent demands of the legislation are usually reluctant to comply if extra effort or cost is involved. However, because there are other incentives that impact a company’s cost of doing business, the legislation will eventually serve its intended purpose and achieve the desired goals.

Article 126 of REACH refers to the obligation for member states to impose “penalties.” The sanctions or penalties are characterized by their punitive or repressive character.

The type of penalty varies among the countries under study. In general, the member states have systematically included fines in their penalty systems, as a continuation of their existing regulations. Other types of penalties include injunctions (including market withdrawal), prison sentences, and name-and-shame methods where non-compliance is made public.

With regard to criminal sanctions, three main types of measures — pecuniary, deprivation of rights, and prohibitions and orders — can be identified. Fines and prison sentences are the main criminal sanctions in all countries where criminal law is applied.

Effective enforcement is ultimately the biggest deterrent to any crime.

For more information and the full article please refer to the link above.