Skip to main content

Renew your registration for 2020-21 – the cost depends on the value of industrial chemicals imported or manufactured in the previous financial year.

Apply for protection of end use as confidential business information

This AICIS guidance is for businesses who want to protect their chemical's specific end use and members of the public who wish to understand what a generalised end use is and how it works.

Apply online in AICIS Business Services

When we publish information about a chemical introduction (for example in an assessment statement), we include its end use. Under our laws, end use means a purpose to which the industrial chemical can be applied. When we publish information about an end use for an introduction, we may include:

  • the chemical’s function
  • its use in specific types of product(s)
  • the industrial sector it will be used in

We publish either a specific end use or a generalised end us in assessment statements, website notices about commercial evaluation authorisations and about internationally assessed reported introductions. We will also routinely publish end use information in evaluation statements.

Note, end use does not include concentration and volume information – we consider this separately for publication under the defined scope of assessment.

What is a GEU and how is it used?

A generalised end use (GEU) is a general description of the end use for an industrial chemical that we publish instead of the specific end use. For this to occur, you must apply for protection of your specific end use as confidential business information (CBI). If we approve your application, we will use the GEU in anything we publish about your introduction’s end use for 5 years (unless CBI is revoked). After 5 years you can apply to continue your CBI protection.

Learn more about CBI

How we define ‘use’ and ‘end use’

Under our laws, a ‘use’ of a chemical includes activities like processing, formulating or storing. Our Glossary will have more examples of use and end use.

A point to clarify about end use — it covers the chemical's purpose. It does not cover concentrations and introduction volumes. If you wish to protect concentration and introduction volumes as CBI, you should 'flag' this at the time you submit an application.  Learn about flagging information.

When you can apply for CBI protection of end use

If you want the chemical's end use to be generalised, you must apply for protection of end use as confidential business information (CBI) at the same time that you submit any of these applications or reports:

  • Assessment certificate applications
  • Applications to vary an assessment certificate
  • Commercial evaluation authorisation (CEA) applications
  • Applications to vary a CEA
  • Applications to vary an Inventory terms of listing
  • Pre-introduction reports for internationally assessed introductions

If your application is successful, your specific end use will be protected as CBI for 5 years. If you wish to continue protection of the specific end use after 5 years, you must apply for continued CBI protection.

What you need to provide in your GEU

You can apply to generalise the chemical’s function, its use in any its use in specific types of product(s) and the industrial sector it will be used in, if these aspects will reveal CBI.

When you apply, you must:

  • describe the specific end use for the chemical
  • propose a GEU for us to consider (see guidance below)
  • provide evidence and reasons to show your claim meets our statutory test

When you propose a GEU, you must use the ‘minimal amount’ of generalising needed to protect CBI. Adopting this ‘lowest level’ of generalising should mean there is no change in exposure to public, workers and the environment. If a greater level of generalising is required, you will have to justify why. This includes providing evidence and reasons why a lower level of generalising is not adequate to protect your CBI.

If your use is a ‘specified class of introduction ’, it may be difficult to justify CBI protection of end use. This is because we have an increased level of concern for specified classes of introductions, due to a greater potential for particular hazards or high levels of human or environmental exposure.

When we review your application, we’ll consider public interest (part of a statutory test) – including what we need to publish in any assessment or evaluation statement to sufficiently communicate and manage the chemical’s risk. We may also consult with sector risk managers to check whether specific aspects about the chemical introduction need to be published for effective risk management.

Find out more about how we assess CBI applications

Examples of how to propose a GEU - chemical function, product types, specific industrial sector

We’ve put together a sample list of product types you can use as a basis for proposing a generalised version of your product’s end use.

Note, it’s not possible to have an exhaustive list for this - you can suggest a GEU that’s not on the list.

We make our decisions about CBI protection of end use on a case-by-case basis. This includes taking into account the range of product type(s) in each application and the chemical’s risk profile.

Example 1

Bob is applying for an assessment certificate for  an ingredient in a two part epoxy adhesive/sealant product . He does not want to disclose this end use on the assessment statement which is published on our website. Bob can apply for CBI protection of the chemical’s end use. He selects ‘two component adhesive and sealant products’ from our GEU list as his proposed GEU.

*Note: If Bob wanted to propose adhesive and sealant product as the GEU he would need to provide evidence and reasons why a lower level of generalising does not result in adequate protection for his CBI.

 

Example 2

David is applying for a variation to the terms of his certificate.  The chemical is a component in shampoo. He does not want to disclose this end use on our website. David can apply for CBI protection of this chemical’s end use and selects ‘rinse-off hair products' from our GEU list as his proposed GEU.

*Note: the proposed GEU has a consistent exposure scenario to the end use. A broader generalised end use of personal care products could include products with a different route of exposure (inhalation) or increased exposure (such as body lotions).

If David wanted to propose this broader GEU he would need to provide evidence and reasons why a lower level of generalising does not result in adequate protection for his CBI.

 

Example 3 

Claire is applying for a commercial evaluation authorisation. The chemical is to be used in trials of a new flexo and gravure printing ink. She does not want to disclose this end use on our website.

Claire can apply for CBI protection of this chemical’s end use and proposes ‘chemical used in commercial printing ink’.

*Note: the proposed GEU indicates that the chemical is for commercial use only. A broader GEU of 'printing ink' could include products with a different exposure scenario (use by the public) that is not permitted under a CEA.

If Claire wanted to propose this broader GEU she would need to provide evidence and reasons why a lower level of generalising does not result in adequate protection for her CBI.

Many end use products can be used in a range of sectors. The sector the product will be used in can affect the exposure scenario for the public, workers and the environment. If generalising the sector changes the exposure scenario you will need to provide evidence and reasons why a lower level of generalising would not result in adequate protection for your CBI.

Example 1

Louise is applying for a commercial evaluation authorisation for a mining reagent used to concentrate gold and copper from ore slurries. She does not want to disclose the specific industrial sector. Louise can apply for CBI protection of the specific industrial sector and proposes a mining reagent used to concentrate metals from ore slurries.

*Note: The specific use for gold and copper mining does not substantially affect the exposure scenarios.

Example 2

Youmie is applying for an assessment certificate for a chemical used in manufacture of coatings applied internally and externally onto aluminium and steel cans used in the food industry. Youmie does not want to disclose the specific industrial sector. Youmie can apply for CBI protection of the specific industrial sector and proposes an end use description of ‘coatings for food packaging’.

*Note: The proposed generalised end use includes use in the food packaging sector. This is a specified class of introduction and therefore it may be difficult to justify CBI protection of this end use.

Example 3

Ian is applying for an assessment certificate for a chemical with the specific end use of resin in automotive coatings. Ian does not want to disclose the specific industrial sector. Ian can apply for CBI protection however depending on the risk profile of the introduction it may be difficult to generalise this sector of use for applications that result in publication of an assessment statement. Use in the automotive coatings has different exposure scenarios to other sectors where coatings are used.

Chemical function’ means how the chemical will work in any product you wish to import or manufacture. For example, a UV absorber function in paint (your product).

Other examples (not exhaustive) of a chemical function of an industrial chemical include:

  • anti-oxidant
  • catalyst
  • stabiliser
  • solvent
  • surfactant
  • preservative

If you want the chemical function to be protected as CBI, you can propose it to be described as a ‘component’ of end use products.

Example 1

Naomi is applying for a variation to the Inventory.

The end use chemical function of her introduction is a non-ionic surfactant in cosmetics.

Naomi requests that non-ionic surfactant in cosmetics be replaced with this generalised end use. 

 

Component of cosmetics

Example 2

Louise is applying for an assessment certificate.

The end use chemical function for her introduction is anti-friction component of lubricant oil.

Louise requests that anti-friction component of lubricant oil be replaced with this generalised end use:

 

Component of lubricant oil

 

Example 3

Louise is applying for an assessment certificate.

The end use chemical function for her introduction is anti-friction component of lubricant oil.

Louise requests that anti-friction component of lubricant oil be replaced with this generalised end use:

Component of lubricant oil

If we approve Naomi or Louise’s applications, we will use the generalised end use in anything we publish (unless CBI is revoked).

 

*Important – usually, the generalisation of function doesn’t impact our ability to summarise risks. But sometimes in cases such as biocides and chelating agents, the chemical’s hazards or risks may be directly related to the function of the chemical. When you apply, you will need to provide evidence and reasons to show your claim meets our statutory test.

Generalised end use product list - what it is and how to use it

You can check to see if your specific end use product is listed with a generalised end use. Note this list is not exhaustive and you can still propose a generalised end use if your product is not on our list.

For all GEU, you should state, where it's applicable:

  • commercial or consumer use
  • use in spray products

Note this list is not exhaustive and you can suggest your own GEU.

Generalised end use Specific end use examples

Adhesives and sealant products means an end use to fasten other materials together or stop the passage of liquid or gas.

If applicable, state if:

  • single component
  • two-component
  • solder
  • hot-melt adhesives
  • Glues
  • Binders
  • Adhesives
  • Pastes
  • Sealants
  • Fillers
  • Putties
  • Solder and caulking compounds
Apparel and footwear care products means an end use to care for apparel and footwear products intended for consumer and commercial use.
  • Footwear polishes.
  • Waxes and stains to waterproof and improve appearance and other desirable properties.
  • Apparel surface treatment products for water, stain or flame resistance.

Arts, crafts and hobby products means an end use in arts, crafts, and hobbies. If applicable, state:

  • adhesives applied at elevated temperatures
  • crafting paint (applied to body)
  • Crafting paints
  • Crafting glue
  • Adhesives (e.g. solder and hot-melt adhesives)
  • Fixatives
  • Finishing spray coatings and modelling clay
Explosive products means an end use for producing a sudden expansion, usually accompanied by production of heat and large changes in pressure.
  • Pyrotechnics
  • High explosives and propellants
  • Igniter
  • Primer
  • Initiatory
  • Illuminants
  • Smoke and decoy flares
  • Incendiaries

Fuel, oil, fuel oil additives and related products means an end use as:

* Liquid fuels in containers used for cooking, heating or for power in vehicles or appliances.

* As a fuel additive to inhibit corrosion, provide lubrication, increase efficiency of use, or decrease production of undesirable by-products.

If applicable, state:

  • cooking and heating fuels
  • vehicular or appliance fuels
  • fuel additives

Examples of liquid fuels include:

  • Gasoline
  • Diesel fuels
  • Kerosene
  • Lamp oils

Examples of additives include:

  • Stabilisers
  • Anti-knock agents
  • Corrosion inhibitors
  • Detergents
  • Fuel dyes
  • Oxygenates
  • Antioxidants
  • Odour agents
Lubricant and grease products means an end use in a liquid, paste or spray to reduce friction, heat generation and wear between solid surfaces.
  • Engine oils
  • Transmission, brake and hydraulic fluids
  • Gear oils
  • Calcium, sodium, lithium, and silicone-based greases

Personal care products – limited environmental release means an end use in solid or hardening personal care products (including cosmetics) that are primarily disposed to landfill.

If applicable, state:

  • use in article that is a children's care product
  • nail care products
  • Baby wipes
  • Facial tissues
  • Nail care products including nail polish and remover
Tattoo ink products means an end use in a combination of industrial chemicals that: contains one or more colouring agents; and is applied to the dermal layer of the skin for the purposes of colouring the skin.
  • Pigments
  • Dyes
  • Resins
Paint and coating products means an end use to paint or coat substrates intended for consumer or commercial use.
  • Decorative coatings
  • Automotive coatings
  • Transportation coating
  • Wood finishes
  • Powder coatings
  • Coil coatings
  • Packaging finishes
  • General industrial coatings
  • Automotive refinish
  • Industrial maintenance and protective coatings
  • Marine coatings
  • Thinners
  • Removers
Plastic and polymer products means an end use in production of plastics or polymers.
  • Monomers
  • Initiators
  • Additives
Construction products not covered by other end uses means an end use in construction materials, except where another category covers the end use.
  • Additives in cements and dry mortar
  • Additives to bitumen for road repair
  • Internal release agents for thermo-set laminating resins
  • Resins in particle board manufacture
  • Wood substitutes used to make mouldings
  • Resins used in the production of composite materials
Fabric, textile and leather products not covered by other end uses means an end use to impart colour and other desirable properties onto fabric, textiles, and leather products that are intended for consumer or commercial use. These properties include:
  • Water/soil/stain repellence
  • Wrinkle resistance
  • Flame resistance

Examples of this type of product include:

  • Textile dyes
  • Textile finishing agents
  • Leather tanning products
  • Leather dyes
  • Leather finishing agents, leather conditioner and surface treatment products
Electronic products means an end use in the production of electronic components.
  • Chemicals in vapour deposition
  • Electroless plating
  • Electroplating
  • Etching
  • High vacuum evaporation/sputtering
  • Laminate processing
  • Soldering
  • Photolithography

Ink, toner and colourant products means an end use for writing, printing, creating an image on paper and other substrates, or applied to substrates to change their colour or hide images that are intended for consumer or commercial.

If applicable, state:

  • packaging that affects exposure eg toner cartridge
  • use on paper substrates
  • Writing
  • Printing
  • Creating an image on paper and other substrates
  • Applied to substrates to change their colour or hide images

Examples of this type of product include:

  • Pigmented liquid
  • Toners or powders used in copy machines and toner/printer cartridges
  • Inks used in writing equipment
  • Inks for stamps and correction fluids and tapes

This category does not include pigments and colourants added to paints and coatings.

Air care products means an end use to odourise or deodorise indoor air in homes, offices, motor vehicles, and enclosed spaces and intended for consumer or commercial use
  • Aerosol sprays
  • Liquid/solid/gel diffusers
  • Air fresheners
  • Scented candles
  • Incense
Anti-freeze and de-icing products means an end use:
  • As an additive to fluids, especially water, to reduce the freezing point of the mixture
  • Applied to surfaces to melt or prevent build-up of ice

Examples of this type of product include:

  • Anti-freeze liquids
  • De-icing liquids (windshield de-icers, aircraft de-icers)
  • De-icing solids (ice melting crystals)
  • Lock de-icers
Automotive care products means an end use to clean and care for exterior and interior surfaces of automotive vehicles intended for consumer or commercial use.
  • Car waxes
  • Polishes
  • Waterproofing products for windshield or automotive window glass
  • Cleaners
  • Sealers
  • Car wash solutions
  • Vinyl/rubber/plastic protectants
  • Automotive carpet and upholstery cleaners
  • Wheel and tire care products
  • Exterior trim protectants
  • Touch-up paint products
Cleaning and furniture care products means an end use (intended for consumer or commercial use) to:
  • Remove dirt, grease, stains, and foreign matter from furniture and furnishings.
  • To cleanse, sanitise, bleach, scour, polish, protect, or improve the appearance of surfaces.

Examples include:

  • Cleaners used on glass, floors, tub and tile, ovens and drains
  • Scouring powders
  • Dusting products
  • Waxes
  • Polishes
  • Stain repellent sprays

Laundry and dishwashing products means an end use in: liquid, granular, gel and unit dose packets/tablets.

If applicable, state:

  • liquid or powder
  • dishwashing detergent liquid (hand-wash)
  • Remove food residue from dishes
  • Remove dirt from textiles
  • Enhance properties of textiles
  • Remove stains from textiles

Examples include:

  • Dishwashing detergent and laundry detergents
  • Stain removers and fabric enhancers
  • Bleach
  • Rinse aids
  • Lime and rust removers
  • Dry cleaning products used in non-aqueous cleaning processes
Extractive products not covered by other end uses means an end use in:
  • Mining
  • Onshore drilling
  • Related activities such as extraction, cementing, hydraulic fracturing, refining

This category does not include end use in offshore drilling. This end use is a designated kind of release to the environment.

Paper products means an end use in paper production.
  • Effluent treatment chemical
  • Maintenance chemicals
  • Deposit and cleaning agents
  • Defoamers
  • Surfactants
  • Biocides
  • Coagulants
  • Polymeric retention aids
  • Coagulants
  • Clay
  • Resins

Personal care products not covered by other end uses means an end use for cosmetic use, except those covered under the personal care products - limited environmental release end use category.

If applicable, state:

  • rinse off or leave on
  • liquid or spray
  • oral care products
  • hair care products
  • nail care products
  • skin applied products
  • Bath and shower products
  • Make-up products
  • Hair, oral and skin care products
  • Secondary sunscreen products
  • Deodorants
  • Perfumes
Photographic products means an end use to take photographic images, develop and process film, and make photographic prints that are intended for consumer or commercial use.
  • Processing solutions (for developing, stopping, and fixing photos).
  • Chemicals used in the manufacture or processing of film or photographic paper.
Water treatment products means an end use to treat water in cooling and heating systems (including industrial heat-exchanger systems) and potable water supplies.
  • Chemicals used in pH buffers
  • Scale and corrosion inhibitors
  • Flocculating agents
  • Ion exchange resins
  • Biocides and slime inhibitors

This category does not include end uses to treat municipal water supplies or other large-scale water supplies for human or animal consumptions or irrigation. These end uses involve a designated kind of release to the environment (for which you don’t calculate an ECV).

Personal vaporiser products means an end use in a device that is intended to produce a vapour or aerosol that is delivered into a person’s body when the person inhales through the device.
  • E-cigarettes
  • E-cigars
  • E-hookah pens
  • E-pens
  • E-pipes
  • Vape pens

Flagging end use information in other circumstances

If you provide information about your end use in circumstances other than the applications or reports listed above, you can 'flag' your specific end use as confidential. One example is if you provide information about your specific end use of a chemical when we do an evaluation of an Inventory-listed chemical. There’s no fee for you to flag information as confidential.

 

 

 

 

Was this page helpful?
For broken links or technical issues, please provide as much detail as possible. Do not include your name, email address and other personal or commercially sensitive information.

Keep informed with updates