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Parliamentary questions
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4 March 2015
E-010730/2014(ASW)
Answer given by Ms Bieńkowska on behalf of the Commission
Question reference: E-010730/2014

The objective of the authorisation requirement of the REACH Regulation(1) is to ensure the good functioning of the internal market while properly controlling risks arising from substances of very high concern and promoting the progressive replacement of those substances by economically and technically viable alternatives.

Workplace exposure to chemicals can occur in nearly all employment sectors and is not limited to industrial uses of chemicals; within the REACH Regulation risks to workers' health may be addressed by one of the two regulatory procedures: authorisation or restriction. Workplace exposure is also regulated by Directive 89/391/EEC(2) on worker protection and its implementing directives, in particular Directive 98/24/EC(3) and Directive 2004/37/EC(4). The Commission is currently examining the interface between these two legislative areas, to ensure that they complement each other and that overlaps are avoided. Important issues need to be addressed, in particular with regard to the adaptation of the methodologies used to derive no-effect levels and occupational exposure limit values and choosing the most appropriate regulatory management measure to control the risk from chemicals used at the workplace.

(1)Regulation (EC) No 1907/2006 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 18.12.2006 concerning the Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals.
(2)Council Directive 89/391/EEC of 12 June on the introduction of measures to encourage improvements in the safety and health of workers at work.
(3)Council Directive 98/24/EC of 7.4.1998 on the protection of the health and safety of workers from the risks related to chemical agents at work. OJ L 131, 5.5.1998, p. 11.
(4)Directive 2004/37/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 29.4.2004 on the protection of workers from the risks related to exposure to carcinogens or mutagens at work. OJ L 158, 30.4.2004, p. 50.

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