Do you manufacture electrical and electronic products, parts or
components? Do you manage manufacturing design for such products?
Do you oversee Chinese suppliers manufacturing such products? If
so, you need to follow Restriction of Hazardous Substance
("RoHS") developments closely for possible future changes
to product content restrictions in China.
The draft, and the existing regulation the draft proposes to
replace, are often referred to as "China RoHS"
regulations, with the existing regulation commonly called
"China RoHS 1" and the draft regulation referred to as
"China RoHS 2." The "RoHS" reference arises
from similarities to and apparent influences of the European Community RoHS Directive.
For manufacturers unfamiliar with China RoHS, this regulatory
program establishes the following key requirements:
limits for lead, mercury, cadmium, and hexavalent chromium
compounds, polybrominated biphenyls and polybrominated diphenyl
information-disclosure requirements involving product,
part, component and material hazardous substance content and
product "environmental protection use periods."
The hazardous-substance content limits have not been implemented
under China RoHS 1. However, the labeling and
information-disclosure requirements have been in place for specific
"electronic information products" under this program
since March 2007.
For all manufacturers, including those that have been following
China RoHS developments, the draft China RoHS 2 regulation released
on May 18 would effectuate a number of important changes to the
program, such as the following:
scope of applicable labeling and information-disclosure
requirements, mentioned above, focusing on "electrical and
electronic products," which are defined as:
"Devices and accessory products
with rated working electrical voltages of no more than 1500 volts
direct current and 1000 volts alternating current which function by
means of current or electromagnetic fields, and generate, transmit
and measure such currents and electromagnetic fields";
Excluding power generation,
transmission and distribution equipment from the
definition of "electrical and electronic products";
content limits to electrical and electronic products included in a
"Compliance Management Catalogue" (i.e., a
to-be-developed list of electronic and electrical products, to be
issued in successive batches over the duration of the regulatory
"compulsory certification" approach reflected in
RoHS 1 for a potentially more flexible "conformity
assessment system" that MIIT recommends to the
Certification and Accreditation Administration ("CNCA")
and that CNCA and MIIT issue and implement, with input from other
material standard conformity requirements (that had been
removed in earlier drafts); and
Removing the "products
manufactured for export" exemption included in China
The labeling and information-disclosure requirements under China
RoHS 2, specified in a separate labeling standard, (SJ/T
11364-2014) (the English reference translation for which is
available here), would become effective at the same time
as China RoHS 2, per earlier MIIT guidance. The hazardous-substance
content limits would not become effective under China RoHS 2 until
a specified time following the promulgation of the "Compliance
It remains to be seen whether all of the language in the May 18
draft will end up in the final RoHS 2 regulation when promulgated
later this year. As anticipated in our earlier post "Trends in Chinese Regulation for Manufacturers to
Watch in 2015;" however, the release of the draft RoHS 2
regulation that underscores product content restrictions are a
major area for manufacturers of electrical and electronic products
to continue to watch.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
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