Vietnam Vietnam reviews implementation status of chemical control regulations

Full revision of the Law on Chemicals is under consideration to resolve existing issues

On June 30, 2021, the Vietnam Chemicals Agency (Vinachemia) under the Ministry of Industry and Trade held a conference on the achievements of the Law on Chemicals to date, jointly with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). This conference was held as part of the program “Application of Green Chemistry in Vietnam to Support Green Growth and Reduction in the Use and Release of POPs/Harmful Chemicals.”

According to Deputy Director General Nguyen Kim Lien of the Vinachemia, the Law on Chemicals entered into force on July 1, 2008, and has undergone slight revisions over the past 13 years. This has allowed stable operation of the Law. However, with the rapid growth of the chemical industry in the country, a variety of problems have emerged in relation to laws and policy measures on chemical management. In particular, the impacts of chemicals on human health and the environment, and incidents involving chemical spills have become major concerns. Other concerns include: 1) insufficient safety distances between chemical production/storage facilities and residential areas; and 2) inadequate safety management of production, trade, use, storage, and transportation of various hazardous chemicals as mixtures (alcohol, solvents for paints and inks, etc.). Given such a situation, attendees at the conference discussed the increased importance of full revision of the Law on Chemicals to strengthen the management of chemicals-related activities.

Director General Nguyen Van Thanh of Vinachemia stated that currently there are a total of 53,000 chemicals, hundreds of chemical producing facilities, and numerous chemical trading/using facilities across the country. The revision of the Law on Chemicals must properly institutionalize the growth of green chemistry and ensure environmentally friendliness, safety for humans, high value, and competitiveness of the industry. The revision of the Law should, Director General Nguyen Van Thanh added, be harmonized with the global chemical management regulations, and aligned with international conventions ratified by Vietnam.