by June Kang
On January 15, 2019, South Korea’s Ministry of Employment and Labor (MOEL) announced the wholly amended Industrial (or Occupational) Safety and Health Act (ISHA). These are the first major amendments to ISHA since 1990 and are scheduled to take effect on January 16, 2020. Individual regulations have different effective dates specified in each applicable article.
The major amendments related to hazard communication are scheduled to take effect on January 16, 2021 and are as follows:
|The responsible body for authoring and providing (M)SDS||Supplier or provider||Manufacturer or importer|
|(M)SDS submission obligation to MOEL||Not applicable||Mandatory* (see more details below)
|Substances or products for which an (M)SDS must be provided||Chemical products containing any of the harmful agents (a.k.a. controlled substances) in accordance with Article 39 of the Act (exclusion may apply by law).||Chemical products containing any of the harmful agents (a.k.a. controlled substances) in accordance with Article 104 of the Act (exclusion may apply by law)|
|Substances that must be disclosed on the (M)SDS||– Prohibited substances regulated under Article 37 of the Act
– Substances that require authorization under Article 38 of the Act
– Substances subject to control regulated under ISHA
– Toxic substances regulated under the Chemicals Control Act
|All harmful agents (a.k.a. controlled substances) contained in the product in accordance with Article 104 of the Act (exclusion may apply by law)|
|CBI application||Decided by the author||Must obtain approval from MOEL in order to not disclose the composition or identities of chemical substances in accordance with Article 104 of the Act.
– With the MOEL’s approval, an alternative name and substitute content should be listed to indicate the hazard and/or risk
– An approved CBI claim is valid for 5 years and can be extended every 5 years
|Only Representative (OR)||Not applicable||Overseas manufacturer(s) can appoint an OR, based in Korea, to handle submission of the (M)SDS to MOEL and submission of the application for use of alternative chemical information for confidential information. An OR is obligated to report their appointment or resignation to MOEL.|
*Under the amended Act, an (M)SDS shall be submitted to MOEL that includes the following information:
– The name of the chemical substance or product;
– The name and content of the ingredients of all harmful agents (a.k.a. controlled substances) contained in the product;
– Handling instructions for health and safety;
– Health, environmental and physical hazards;
– Other matters specified by the Ordinance of the Ministry of Employment and Labor including physico-chemical properties;
– If 100% composition is not included in the (M)SDS, substances not subject to Article 104 should be submitted separately. Positive certification can be submitted to certify that imported chemical substances comply with K-REACH if the overseas manufacturer does not want to disclose the full composition of substances not subject to Article 104.
References (in Korean only):
[MOEL Press Release] – Announcement of Whole Amendments to the Industrial (or Occupational) Safety and Health Act (ISHA) announced on January 15, 2019: [보도자료] 산업안전보건법 전부개정법률 공포!
Industrial (or Occupational) Safety and Health Act (ISHA) published on January 15, 2019: 산업안전보건법 전부개정법률 공포
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Industrial (or Occupational) Safety and Health Act