An overview of the European CLP Regulations

 As of the 20th January 2009, the current directive for labelling and classifying chemicals was replaced by the new Classification, Labelling and Packaging regulation, commonly referred to as CLP. 

The aim of the new regulation was to introduce a new global system for all companies operating and trading within Europe, and now that it’s in force businesses have been required to comply with the new rules. As there have been many changes, it was recommended that companies, especially those in the U.S, get their current conditions analysed as the likelihood of necessary amendments was high. 

In order to guide affected companies through the transition, the full CLP regulations have been made accessible at the EURLEX website which officially states the European Law Online Journal. The new system has been an essential change to ensure regulatory efficiency regarding hazardous chemical substance s. 

CLP was based on the United Nations – Globally Harmonised System – which has its own rules for classification labelling of chemicals, it also complements the REACH regulation which stands for: Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals. The aim for the new CLP is to gradually replace both the Dangerous Substances Directive and the Dangerous Preparations Directive by the 1st June 2015. 

New fees have been introduced for the regulation which is payable to ECHA under the CLP regulation:
€12,000 to harmonise the classification and labelling
€4,000+ for confidentiality/use of alternative chemical name for substances in mixtures
Should smaller businesses require these changes, then they could qualify for up to a 90% reduction in costs. 

As of the 30th November 2010, all substances had to be classed under the new regulations. Deadlines that are still to be met by the new changes are that all mixture classifications must be met according to CLP rules by the 31st May 2015. 

There have been many changes, and with the new legal obligations in place, as of now all hazardous chemicals are to be classified by CLP rules, which are then to be posted to the central database (known as the Classification and Labelling Inventory) which was originally set up and currently maintained by ECHA, the European Chemicals Agency.