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Rules amendments and regulatory changes from 23 November 2021

Outcome of consultation on proposed amendments to the Rules

Between 23 August 2021 and 17 September 2021, we asked for your feedback regarding proposed amendments to the Industrial Chemicals (General) Rules 2019 and the Industrial Chemicals (Consequential Amendments and Transitional Provisions) Rules 2019.

After considering stakeholder feedback, the General and Transitional Rules were amended by the Minister – the Industrial Chemicals (General) Legislation Amendment (2021 Measures No. 1) Rules 2021 (referred to as 'amending rules').

This document summarises:

  • feedback that we received during public consultation
  • outcome of each proposed amendment after considering stakeholder feedback
  • the resultant changes that are prescribed in the amending rules


Regulatory changes due to Rules amendments

We made some changes to the 'Guide to categorising your chemical importation and manufacture' and other pages on our website to reflect amendments that were made to the General and Transitional Rules. In general, the changes are one of the following:

  • clarify existing requirements or obligations
  • change requirements or obligations
  • add new requirements or obligations
  • expand options available to introducers to make it easier to meet obligations 

Some changes start on 23 November 2021 and others commence on 10 December 2021.

Changes from 23 November 2021

Requirements for chemicals introduced at the nanoscale (items 1-19 in Schedule 1 of the amending rules)

Web content changes to clarify: 

  • the criteria for introductions of chemicals at the nanoscale
  • how the nanoscale criteria apply in practice
  • the associated record-keeping obligations

Record-keeping for listed introductions (item 24 in Schedule 1 of the amending rules)

  • 40 working day timeframe for introducers to provide the CAS name and CAS number for their chemical if we ask for it and it is covered by a written undertaking.
  • Extra option for the record that an introducer can keep if they don't know their chemical's CAS name and CAS number – 'the names of all products containing the industrial chemical that are imported into Australia by the person'.

Record-keeping for 'specified classes of introduction' (items 25-32 in Schedule 1 of the amending rules)

If an introducer does not have access to the information they need to meet record-keeping obligations, they have the option to hold a written undertaking from the person who knows the information.

Record-keeping for internationally-assessed (reported) introductions (items 36-39 in Schedule 1 of the amending rules)

Changes to clarify that introducers must keep both of the following:

  • records to prove that the volume introduced in a registration year did not exceed the volume stated in their pre-introduction report
  • records to prove that the volume introduced in a registration year did not exceed the assessed volume in the overseas assessment or evaluation

Movement of industrial chemicals into or out of Australia (items 40-50 in Schedule 1 of the amending rules)

Changes to better align the General Rules with the scope of the Rotterdam Convention and Stockholm Convention.

Air fresheners and 'designated kind of release into the environment' (item 54 in Schedule 1 of the amending rules)

The introduction of a chemical with an end use in air fresheners is no longer a 'designated kind of release into the environment'. This change clarifies the original intent of this requirement.

Transitioned assessment certificates and chemicals (items 1-2 in Schedule 2 of the amending rules)

A new rule was added so that when a chemical that is issued an assessment certificate under the transitional legislation gets added to the Inventory, the conditions of that certificate will also be added to the chemical's Inventory listing.

Certain rows from the table showing chemicals with a NICNAS 'conditions of use' that are transitioned to AICIS 'defined scopes of assessment' have been removed.

Other changes – corrections (items 51-56 in Schedule 1 of the amending rules)

  • The name of the European Commission Scientific Committee on Consumer Safety was corrected in section 6 of the General Rules.
  • The table of industrial chemicals that are comparable to industrial chemicals listed on the Inventory was corrected by removing a chemical.
  • An omission was corrected by adding circumstances for when an AICIS Approved Chemical Name or generalised end use must be used.
  • An omission was corrected by allowing the consideration period for an application to be 'paused'.

Changes from 10 December 2021

Pre-introduction report requirement relating to nanoscale chemicals for research and development (item 20 in Schedule 1 of the amending rules)

An extra requirement will be added for pre-introduction reports that requires introducers to report whether their chemical is at the nanoscale. This applies to introductions of chemicals only used for research and development.

Permission to use international assessment report (items 21-23 in Schedule 1 of the amending rules)

Introducers will need to declare that they have permission to use an international assessment report from the report's owner.

Record-keeping for 'designated kind of release into the environment' (items 33-35 in Schedule 1 of the amending rules)

The type of records that must be kept for these introductions will be updated to:

  • include the words 'if practicable'
  • add a new record-keeping obligation about the quantity of the chemical released into the environment
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