Following extensive discussion, 23 European companies and groups of companies have agreed to set up a consortium for the authorisation of chromium trioxide.
The group plans to publish a consortium agreement on 15 January 2012. Manufacturers, importers and downstream users who wish to obtain authorisation for chromium trioxide are invited to sign by 15 March 2012.
The consortium will give participants access to authorisation dossiers for the following seven uses:
- Formulation of preparations
- Functional chrome plating
- Decorative plating
- Other surface treatment WITH Chromium VI present on the end product
- Other surface treatment WITH NO Chromium VI present at detection limit on the end product
- Small scale laboratory use
Consortium costs will be divided into common costs and cost per use. Costs will be substantially different for companies per their size; larger companies will be forced to pay more – this, they hope, will encourage more, particularly smaller, companies to sign up to the agreement.
The consortium is due to start its work in May 2012 and aims to finish by May 2014. Chromium trioxide is one of 13 substances prioritised by Echa for inclusion in REACH Annex XIV earlier this month (CW 20 December 2011). The “sunset date” proposed for authorisation of chromium trioxide is May 2016.