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Parliamentary questions
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20 February 2020
Question for written answer E-001040/2020
to the Commission
Rule 138
Maria Arena (S&D)
 Answer in writing 
 Subject: Evaluation of biocidal active substances

A recent communication from the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) acknowledged the concerning delay to the review programme for biocidal active substances. Evaluations have only been completed for 250 out of the 700 active substance and product type combinations in the programme. Thus, a significant number of substances that are potentially highly harmful to health and the environment are on the EU market without having undergone adequate safety assessment. ECHA, the Commission and the Member States have agreed on a joint action plan to remedy the situation.

Can the Commission clarify:

1. what the key measures of this plan will be and how they will solve the current delays and increase health and environment protection, in a context of limited capacities within the Member States and ECHA?

2. how, in the context of the recent implementation of the endocrine disrupting chemicals criteria for biocides, this plan will guarantee that all active substances are thoroughly assessed for their potential endocrine properties within the legal time requirements, without causing further delays to the review programme?

3. whether, in cases of incomplete safety dossiers and in the context of limited legal deadlines, the Commission pushes for the systematic use of precautionary non-approvals until all safety data have been provided and fully assessed?

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