South Korea Amends K-REACH for Chemical Registration

Posted on: May 17, 2018

By June Kang

South Korea Ministry of Enviornment Government Complex - read about K-REACH regulatory updates at
By Minseong Kim [CC BY-SA 4.0], from Wikimedia Commons
On March 20, 2018, South Korea’s Ministry of Environment (MOE) adopted amendments to K-REACH (known formally as the Act on the Registration and Evaluation of Chemicals) that will be enforced beginning January 1, 2019. Through these amendments, the MOE will improve the chemical management system to obtain necessary hazard information for chemicals currently circulated in South Korea. These amendments have been modeled after EU REACH. Therefore, all the chemical substances circulated within South Korea in quantities of 1 tonne/year or more are to be registered by 2030. A summary of major changes from the MOE press release is provided below.

Current K-REACH Amendments
Substances subject to registration (Article 10-1) 1 tonne/year of designated existing chemical substances subject to registration in batch system for registration up to total 7000 substances or more

Scheduled registration deadlines;

  • 2018 – 510 substances
  • 2021 – 800 substances (estimated)
  • 2024 – 1000 substance (estimated)
All existing chemical substances distributed over 1 tonne/year or more are subject to registration by stage. The grace period for each stage is scheduled based on the volume and hazard. It is scheduled to complete registrations by 2030.

Scheduled registration deadlines based on the hazard and tonnage band;

  • 2018 – 510 substances (as scheduled under current K-REACH)
  • 2021 – Carcinogens, and existing substances manufactured or imported 1000 tonne/year or more
  • 2024 – Existing substances manufactured or imported 100 tonne/year or more
  • 2027 – Existing substances manufactured or imported 10 tonne/year or more
  • 2030 – Existing substances manufactured or imported 1 tonne/year or more

*Note: EU-REACH model is employed.

Preliminary notification (Article 10-3) NA Notify MOE of the name of substance and the amount to be manufactured or imported when manufactured ,or imported without registration during the grace period
Low volume new chemical substance (Article 10-4) All new chemicals regardless of the amount are subject to registration.

If registration was exempted under TCCA for LV, it is also exempted under K-REACH.

Registration exempted for new chemical substance less than 0.1 tonne (100kg)/year but subject to notification (exemptions may apply by law).

If exempted under TCCA, it must be notified to MOE.

Non-registrant penalty

(Article 17-2)

NA In the case of manufacturing and importing chemical substances without completing registration, the person who manufactures or imports unregistered substances or products, will be penalized up to 5% of the annual sales revenue. (2.5% for small scale enterprises)
Information provision requirement

(Article 29)

Mandatory to provide hazard information to the buyer for the substances for which registration is completed Regardless of the registration status, mandatory to provide hazard information to the buyer for any designated hazardous substances
Higher level of control on the product containing SVHCs (Substances of Very High Concern) Notification required only for the designated hazardous substances such as toxic, prohibited and restricted substances. Regardless of the hazardous substance designation status, mandatory to notify to MOE the product containing SVHC designated as critically controlled substance including CMR substances

References (in Korean only):


South Korea
Ministry of Environment (MOE)
Substance registration


The views, opinions and technical analyses presented here are those of the author, and are not necessarily those of UL LLC. All content is subject to copyright and may not be reproduced without prior authorization from UL. While the editors of this site may verify the accuracy of its content from time to time, we assume no responsibility for errors made by the author, editorial staff or any other contributor.