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EU Restricts Lead in PVC Articles under REACH

SafeGuardSAutomotive, Hardgoods, Personal and Protective Equipment, Softlines, Toys and Juvenile ProductsMay 08, 2023

SG 55/23

The EU has expanded the restriction of lead to PVC articles under entry 63 to Annex XVII of REACH. The new law will become effective on November 29, 2024

On May 8, 2023, the European Union (EU) issued Regulation (EU) 2023/923 to revise the restriction of lead and its compounds falling under entry 63 to Annex XVII of Regulation (EC) No. 1907/2006 ‘Registration, Evaluation, Authorization and Restriction of Chemicals (entry 63 to Annex XVII of REACH). The latest amendment restricts lead to less than 0.1% in PVC polymer and copolymer articles.

The new restriction contains several derogations. It:

  • Allows PVC articles containing recovered flexible PVC until May 28, 2025
  • Applies to PVC-silica separators in lead acid batteries from May 28, 2033
  • Permits the following PVC articles containing recovered rigid PVC until May 28, 2033, provided the recovered rigid PVC contains less than 1.5% lead. These PVC articles containing recovered rigid PVC are profiles and sheets for 1) specified applications in buildings and civil engineering works, 2) decks and terraces, 3) specified interior building applications, as well as certain multi-layer pipes and fittings (clauses 18 a-f)
  • Authorizes suppliers of PVC articles containing recovered rigid PVC with 0.1% or more of lead to provide the statement ‘Contains ≥ 0.1% lead’ on the article – this statement may be placed on the article packaging if is not possible on the article.
  • Requires suppliers of PVC articles containing recovered rigid PVC to provide documentation to national enforcement authorities, if requested, to substantiate the claims on the recovered origin of the PVC in those articles. Substantiation of such claims may include certificates issued by schemes to demonstrate traceability and recycled content, such as EN 15343:2007 ‘Plastics – Recycled plastics – Plastics recycling traceability and assessment of conformity and recycled content’. Claims made on the recovered origin of the PVC in imported articles must be accompanied by a certificate that provides equivalent proof of traceability and recycled content, issued by an independent third party
  • Exempts ‘jewelry articles’ and ‘articles supplied to the general public that can be mouthed by children’ (paragraph 1, in accordance with paragraphs 2 to 5 & paragraph 7, in accordance with paragraphs 8 and 10) under entry 63 to Annex XVII of REACH
  • Exempts articles within the scope of four pieces of legislation (see Table 1)

Highlights of the amendment are summarized in Table 1.

Regulation (EU) 2023/923 of May 3, 2023, amending entry 63 to Annex XVII of Regulation (EC) No. 1907/2006 as regards lead and its compounds in PVC
Official Journal of the EU, May 8, 2023

SubstanceScope1RequirementEffective Date
Lead and its compoundsArticles produced from PVC polymers or copolymers< 0.1%November 29, 2024

1Articles falling under the following pieces of legislation are exempt:

  • Regulation (EC) No.1935/2004 ‘Food contact materials and articles’
  • Directive 94/62/EC ‘Packaging and packaging waste’
  • Directive 2009/48/EC ‘Toys’
  • Directive 2011/65/EU ‘Electrical and electronic equipment (RoHS recast)

Table 1


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