The United Kingdom is withdrawing from the European Union – a process known colloquially as “Brexit”. From 30 March 2019, the UK will become a “third country” i.e. external to the EU. REACH legislation will consequently no longer apply.
The following guidance is intended to provide information on a number of common REACH-related issues for companies operating in Poland. Please note, however, that it does not constitute legal advice and that all information provided is subject to amendment arising from any potential future agreements between the EU and the UK. Interested parties are recommended to consult official ECHA guidance for the latest updates.
As a company based in Poland, REACH will continue to apply to your company. You may, however, face new and different rules on the import into and use of chemical substances in the UK.
Supply chains involving UK-based partners may also be affected. In particular, registrations by UK entities will by default become invalid when the UK becomes a third country. Registrations will, however, remain valid should the UK-based registrant either relocate to an EU-27 country or appoint an EU-27 Only Representative. Failing this, the following courses of action are available to companies based in Poland:
1. Poland-based company purchasing chemical substance registered by UK supplier.
The company based in Poland would need to register the substance under REACH as an importer or to find an alternative supplier
2. Poland-based co-registrant where UK entity is Lead Registrant.
The registrants would need to appoint a new Lead Registrant (appropriate provisions for this process are likely to exist in existing agreements) and to transfer the Lead Registrant role to an EU-27/EEA entity before the date of the UK withdrawal.
Authorisations granted to UK suppliers will likewise lose their legal effect on the UK’s withdrawal from the EU. UK-based manufacturers, formulators or Only Representatives (but not importers) may transfer their authorisations to an Only Representative based in the EU-27/EEA. In the absence of a supplier holding valid REACH authorisation, however, Poland-based downstream users will themselves need to apply for an authorisation should they wish to continue to use the given substance.