ECHA-CEFIC collaboration on dossier compliance

On 14 June 2018, ECHA and the European Chemical Industry Council (Cefic) signed a joint statement, agreeing to cooperate in promoting the progressive and planned improvement of REACH registration dossiers.

On 26 June 2019, Cefic launched a voluntary multi-annual action plan to review and improve REACH dossiers. This action plan is implemented in cooperation with ECHA and provides a framework for Cefic’s member companies to proactively and systematically evaluate the safety data they have already submitted under REACH.

The European Commission and ECHA’s REACH Evaluation Joint Action Plan states that, by the end of 2019, ECHA should establish working arrangements with major industry associations to proactively and continuously improve registration dossiers. The cooperation agreement with Cefic is one of the actions under this plan.

Cefic’s multiannual action plan

Cefic’s multi-annual action plan runs from 2019-2026. The first year was reserved for planning and the following seven years will be used for the updates of the registrations. The plan describes the timeline for the work, roles, responsibilities, substance prioritisation criteria, critical issues and progress reporting.

To be transparent, Cefic publishes progress reports and summaries of workshops held together with ECHA. The full reports of the workshops are only shared with the companies that have signed the voluntary agreement. Further information is available on Cefic’s web page. 

Joint activities under the cooperation agreement

To allow exchange of expert advice on scientific and technical challenges related to registration dossiers, ECHA and Cefic organised a kick-off workshop on 29 November 2019. The focus was, in particular, on read-across and categories, discussing as many concrete examples as possible. These discussions aimed to generate knowledge that could further support companies in improving their registration dossiers. A summary report of the workshop is available on Cefic’s website.

During 2020, ECHA worked together with three companies on a pilot project that looked at how to improve the registration dossiers of four prioritised groups of substances.

The project ran from December 2019 to October 2020 and helped companies understand how to review and improve the content of registration dossiers, with a focus on grouping and read-across approaches and how to implement them successfully. Discussions during the project and the final workshop contributed to better collaboration and more open exchange of views.

Cefic published a report summarising the learnings of the project in January 2021 on its website. ECHA has prepared general advice to all registrants and the information is available in the related links below.

Next steps

ECHA plans to continue working with a limited number of companies and consortia that are willing to proactively submit their testing strategies that cover groups of substances.

ECHA and Cefic will continue to monitor the success of the cooperation – examining the testing strategies and testing proposals received and how these impact the generation of data and improve the registrations overall. 

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