The Trans-Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership Agreement (TTIP) could reduce non-tariff barriers, cut costs and reduce regulatory red tape while maintaining high regulatory standards, according to a Cefic expert speaking at an event March 21 at the European Parliament.
The meeting on regulatory cooperation in the TTIP negotiations, co-organized by the European chemicals industry and Dr. Godelieve Quisthoudt-Rowohl, MEP from the European People’s Party (EPP), brought together European parliamentarians, European Commission officials, and representatives from industry and NGOs.
Lena Perenius, Cefic executive director for international chemicals management, laid out an industry framework for regulatory cooperation under TTIP. It is based on an original proposal jointly submitted with Cefic’s U.S. counterpart – the American Chemistry Council – in the public consultation to negotiators on both sides.
Europe and U.S. regulatory regimes have drifted apart in recent decades. Despite the differences, the industry proposal identifies areas where EU and U.S. authorities can work together. For instance, both EU and U.S. systems build on scientific assessments. The two can be better linked through more scientific exchange.
Both systems also have procedures to prioritize substances to assess first. The sector sees possibilities to streamline priority setting and ultimately share the assessment burden. Third, classification and labeling is done using the GHS, although applied differently. The proposal calls for a mechanism to align classification based on GHS.
“There are efficiencies to be gained by both industry and authorities while maintaining high standards,” Perenius said.
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