On July 22, 2021, the Ministry of Environment (MOE) of South Korea publicized a draft amendment of the Enforcement Decree and Enforcement Rules for the Consumer Chemical Products and Biocides Safety Act (hereinafter “K-BPR”), which introduce a relief system for victims of biocidal products. The proposed amendments introduce provisions 1) to pay relief to victims of biocidal products in the event that defects of a certain biocidal product have caused damages to human health; and 2) to mandate for each of responsible manufacturers and importers of such biocidal products to pay a share of the relief.
The major provisions of the draft amendment are as follows.
The MOE will pay lump-sum disability compensation and medical expenses to victims of biocidal products, and if a victim dies, the MOE will pay lump-sum death compensation, funeral expenses, and medical expenses to the surviving family. In the case of lump-sum disability compensation, the amount of the compensation will be determined according to the grade of damage, which will be calculated and determined based on the degree of damage caused by the biocidal product.
Proposed relief to be paid to victims:
- Lump-sum disability compensation: KRW 21.12 million to 88.00 million (approximately USD 18,100 to 75,400) depending on the grade of disability
- Lump-sum death compensation: KRW 41.54 million (approx. USD 35,600)
- Funeral expenses: KRW 2.77 million (approx. USD 2,370)
Each business entity that has manufactured or imported the biocidal product(s) that have caused human damages (hereinafter the “causative products”) shall pay a share of the relief (hereinafter the “contribution”) calculated with the following equation:
- Contribution = Estimated payable amount per person × Number of victims × (Usage ratio of the causative product ×5 + Sales ratio of the causative product × 1.0) / 3.5
The MOE added that the draft amendment to the Enforcement Rules stipulates that contribution could be reduced for products manufactured or imported by small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs); and that a payment of contribution by a SME can be made in a maximum of 12 installments within three years. The proposed amendment will be open for public comments from July 23, 2021 to September 1, 2021, after which it will be reviewed by the Standing Committee and submitted to the plenary session of the National Assembly.
- Proposed amendment to the K-BPR Enforcement Decree:
- Proposed amendment to the K-BPR Enforcement Rules:
The notice on the proposed amendments can be viewed at: