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Restriction of Hazardous Substances (RoHS) Directive

Directive 2011/65/EU on the restriction of the use of certain hazardous substances in electrical and electronic equipment (RoHS), aims to promote environmentally sound recovery and disposal of waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE). To accomplish this, the RoHS Directive restricts certain hazardous substances from being present in this equipment.

It is your responsibility to comply with RoHS. This material is for informational purposes only. It is not intended as legal advice. We encourage you to consult your legal counsel if you have questions about the laws and regulations concerning your product, as well as consult the national laws and regulations transposing RoHS.

What items does RoHS apply to?

RoHS applies to electrical and electronic equipment (EEE), which is defined as equipment which is dependent on electric currents or electromagnetic fields in order to work properly and equipment for the generation, transfer and measurement of such currents and fields.

In other words, EEE includes items that have a battery or need a power supply to work properly.

What hazardous substances are restricted by RoHS?

With limited exceptions, RoHS currently restricts lead (Pb), mercury (Hg), cadmium (Cd), hexavalent chromium (CrVI), polybrominated biphenyls (PBB) and polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDE). Per 22 July 2019 RoHS will additionally restrict Bis(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (DEHP), Butyl benzyl phthalate (BBP), Dibutyl phthalate (DBP) and Diisobutyl phthalate (DIBP).

Additional chemicals may be subsequently added to the restrictions list by the EU Commission.

Are the RoHS Directive and WEEE Directive related?

Yes, both the Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Directive (WEEE) and RoHS are intended to promote environmentally-safe recycling and recovery for EEE. However, each Directive serves a different purpose: RoHS restricts the hazardous substances that can be used in EEE, while WEEE regulates the disposal and recovery of EEE. The RoHS Directive also covers a wider range of EEE compared to the WEEE Directive.

Who does RoHS apply to?

Anyone that manufactures, imports or distributes EEE for sale in EU countries.

How are EEE manufacturers affected by RoHS?

Under RoHS, manufactures are required to ensure that the EEE they make does not contain restricted substances above the maximum concentration values (0.1% by weight for each restricted substance, except for Cadmium which is 0.01%).

After RoHS compliance is ensured (through technical documentation and internal production control), the manufacturer must prepare a declaration of conformity and affix a CE marking on the finished product and packaging. The declaration of conformity and technical documentation is required to be saved by the manufacturer for 10 years following initial placement of the product on the EU.

Manufacturers are also required to include their name, trade name or trade mark and the address at which they can be contacted on the EEE, its packaging or a document accompanying the EEE.

Manufactures that have reason to believe that EEE they have manufactured does not comply with RoHS are required to take necessary corrective action, including withdrawing or recalling the product if appropriate and informing the competent national authority where they have made the EEE available. In addition, manufacturers are required to keep a register of non-conforming EEE and product recalls, and keep distributors informed of any such issues.

How are EEE importers affected by RoHS?

The importer of EEE into the EU is required to ensure that the EEE manufacturer has complied with RoHS. This includes ensuring that the conformity assessment has been carried out by the manufacturer and that the EEE bears a CE marking.

Importers are also required to include their name, trade name or trade mark and the address at which they can be contacted on the EEE, its packaging or a document accompanying the EEE.

If an importer has reason to believe that EEE is not in conformity with RoHS, the importer is not permitted to sell the EEE until it has been brought into conformity, and is required to inform the manufacturer and competent authority.

In addition, importers that have reason to believe that EEE they have imported does not comply with RoHS are required to take necessary corrective action, including withdrawing or recalling the product if appropriate and informing the competent national authority where they have made the EEE available. Importers are also required to keep a register of non-conforming EEE and product recalls, and keep distributors informed of any such issues.

How are EEE distributors affected by RoHS?

Distributors are required to exercise due care in relation to selling EEE in the EU. This may include verifying that the EEE bears a CE marking and that the EEE is accompanied with appropriate documents for end users.

If a distributor has reason to believe that EEE is not in conformity with RoHS, the distributor is not permitted to sell the EEE until it has been brought into conformity, and is required to inform the manufacturer and competent authority.

In addition, distributors that have reason to believe that EEE they have distributed does not comply with RoHS are required to take necessary corrective action, including withdrawing or recalling the product if appropriate and informing the competent national authority where they have made the EEE available.

Additional Information

We strongly encourage you to visit the following sites to learn more information on RoHS:

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