On March 7, 2022, the Australian Industrial Chemicals Introduction Scheme (AICIS) announced that it had revised and enforced the Industrial Chemicals Rules 2019 to incorporate the Minamata Convention on Mercury (hereinafter referred to as the Minamata Convention).
Under the revised rules, when mercury (Hg (0), CAS No. 7439-97-6) or a mixture of mercury with a mercury concentration of 95% by weight or more (including alloys of mercury) is imported or exported as an element for industrial use after the date of enforcement, it must be applied for and approved by AICIS.
On the same day, AICIS released the application forms required for the import and export of mercury in the following three patterns, which can be downloaded from the AICIS website “Import and Export of Mercury.”
- Imports of mercury from countries who have not signed the Minamata Convention
- Exports of mercury to countries who have not signed the Minamata Convention
- Exports of mercury to countries that have signed the Minamata Convention
Import and export of mercury and mercury-containing products between the countries that have signed the Convention are regulated as follows.
- Mercury as an element
Limited to permitted uses under the Convention, environmentally appropriate temporary storage, and requires the written consent of the importing country.
- Mercury-containing products
Australia signed the Minamata Convention on December 7, 2021, and since then, it is obliged to implement the Convention and report on progress.
The relevant documents can be viewed from the following URLs.
- AICIS press release, “New rules for mercury imports and exports from 7 March 2022”
- AICIS Importing or Exporting Mercury website