South Korea: RoHS Amendment Proposal Advances


06 August 2020

lotte-world-tower-1791802_1920 (2)South Korea is on track to strengthen its RoHS restrictions, having notified a proposal to the WTO on 5 August 2020.

The Ministry of Environment intends to amend K-RoHS to align with Directive 2015/862/EU by restricting the presence of certain phthalates in EEE, and to subject a further 23 products to restrictions.

Initially proposed on 5 October 2018, the draft has floundered for some time, having met with resistance from stakeholders. Yesterday’s notification constitutes a major step by the Ministry in getting this legislation enacted. The Ministry has also succeeded in abridging the usual 60-day notification period to just 20 days.

Major features of the proposal include:

  • The addition of 23 new products subject to restrictions on the use of hazardous substances, including, among others: dehumidifiers, toasters, electric kettles, electric water heaters, electric frying pans, hair dryers, surveillance cameras, video game consoles (not including hand-held game consoles) wired and wireless routers
  • Addition of 4 substances (DEHP, BBP, DBP and DIBP) subject to restrictions on the use of EEE
  • The relaxation of requirements on retention of records for businesses subject to mandatory recycling and take-back
  • Improvement of penalties with regard to violation for hazardous substances restrictions
  • Addition of military equipment, large fixed industrial equipment, large fixed facilities and medical equipment to the products excluded from restrictions, as well as recycling and take-back obligations

Enforcement of the new provisions is still planned for 1 January 2021.

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