Vietnam Vietnam releases draft revision of Law on Chemicals, plans to enact it in 2025

Vietnam releases draft revision of Law on Chemicals, plans to enact it in 2025

On Oct. 12, 2022, Vietnam’s Ministry of Industry and Trade released a draft revision of  the Law on Chemicals (06/2007/QH12). The revision was proposed as the Law on Chemicals, which was issued in 2007 and came into effect in 2008, has shown various flaws over 14 years of implementation. It aims to clarify ambiguous points in the law, promote Vietnam’s chemical industry, implement the risk assessment of chemicals, and implement effective management of chemicals contained in products. The ministry expects to submit an amendment bill at the eighth session of the 15th national assembly in October 2024 and have the bill passed at the ninth session in May 2025.

The draft and an explanatory material for it are available at
http://legal.moit.gov.vn/du-thao-van-ban/62.html.

 

Objectives of the revision

  • Increase the practicality of the Law on Chemicals and ensure consistency between this law and treaties Vietnam has adopted.
  • Increase the effectiveness and efficiency of the national management of chemicals.
  • Protect rights and interests of investors, organizations and individuals regarding chemicals.
  • Attract foreign investment and domestic private investment for the chemical industry’s development.

 

Main points of the revision

To achieve the above objectives, substantial changes to the Law on Chemicals are considered in the six points shown in the table below.

No. Point Proposed changes
1 Clarification of the law’s scope
  • Add new word definitions to distinguish chemicals and products containing chemicals.
  • Define auxiliary products and intermediate products to make them distinct from waste.
2 Continuous development of the chemical industry as a fundamental, modern industry
  • Introduce rules for the chemical industry’s development.
  • Clarify the scope of chemical projects; for example, projects can be defined as concentrated chemical industrial parks, logistics centers or projects for the manufacturing of basic chemicals, petrochemicals, rubber, pharmaceuticals, fertilizers, industrial gases, paints and printing inks, detergents, cleaners, chemical products, etc.
  • Develop specific standards and requirements for chemical projects and develop systems that give preferential treatment to investment projects for concentrated industrial parks and projects using green chemistry.
  • Introduce rules for chemical project management.
  • Revise rules so that chemical accident prevention and response plans are reviewed and approved within a period appropriate for chemical projects.
3 Chemical management throughout their lifecycle
  • Develop technical guidelines for chemical risk assessment.
  • Consider which is more appropriate, creating a list of specific chemicals or grouping chemicals for management based on their hazard classification.
  • Centrally manage chemical information and administrative procedures between the central and local governments on the national chemical database.
  • Clarify the responsibilities of each government department based on chemical types.
4 Management of chemicals contained in products
  • Manage chemicals contained in products in a manner that matches international trends for consumers’ health and effective environmental protection, with a focus on the management of household products that potentially expose users to hazardous chemicals.
  • Restrict the import into Vietnam of low-quality products and products with a high concentration of hazardous chemicals restricted in other countries.
  • Reduce the release of products with high hazardous chemical content into the environment after use.

 

In line with these objectives, the following things are implemented:

  • Develop national technical standards for hazardous chemical content in household and industrial products.
  • Develop guidelines for the risk assessment of products.
  • Introduce the requirement that importers and manufacturers of products containing chemicals provide chemical information for consumers.
5 Effective systems to ensure chemical-related security
  • Clarify the responsibilities of each organization regarding the development of national technical standards for chemicals.
  • Institutionalize chemical safety training, clarify requirements for training instructors, and develop a system where a national management body performs inspections.
  • Introduce the obligation to publish and update chemical accident prevention and response plans/measures on the national chemical database.
  • Develop and unify rules for chemical accident prevention and response plans at the local level.
6 Efficient and effective systems for chemical information
  • Centrally manage information provided by businesses and the industry and trade departments of local governments on the national chemical database.
  • Keep information consistent between the National Single Window and the national chemical database.
  • Enhance the information security of the national chemical database and its function of protecting confidential information.

 

New and amended articles of the law

The draft proposes the amendment or addition of the following articles of the Law on Chemicals.

Article Description of the article Note
Article 4 Word definitions Amendment
Article 10 Requirements for chemical manufacturing and chemical trade projects Amendment
Article 10 a Rules regarding strategies for the chemical industry Addition
Article 10 b Policies to encourage investment in chemical projects Addition
Article 10 c Rules for investment in the chemical industry regarding design consulting Addition
Article 10 d Rules for chemical project management Addition
Article 14 Requirements for the production and trade of chemicals subject to special conditions Amendment
Article 15 Requirements for the production and trade of restricted chemicals Amendment
Article 18 Rules for the cancellation of qualification certifications and licenses Amendment
Article 19 Rules for banned chemicals Amendment
Article 20 Rules for hazardous chemical transportation Amendment
Article 21 Rules for hazardous chemical storage Amendment
Article 22 Rules for safety distances Amendment
Article 31 a Rules for hazardous chemical use Addition
Article 31 b Rules for chemicals contained in products Addition
Article 36 Rules for chemical accident prevention and response Amendment
Article 43 Rules for the notification of chemicals Amendment
Article 47 Rules for providing information on toxic and hazardous chemicals Amendment
Article 50 Rules for the protection of confidential information on chemicals Amendment
Article 55 Rules for the national chemical inventory and national chemical database Amendment
Article 63 National management responsibilities of the Ministry of Industry and Trade and government bodies equivalent to ministries that are directly relevant to chemicals Amendment
Article 67 Rules for dealing with violations Amendment

 

Author / Responsibility

AOKI Kenji

Senior Consultant, EnviX Ltd.
General Director, E&H Consulting Co., Ltd.

Business Performance

Expertise in EHS (environment, health and safety) consulting in ASEAN region.
- Environmental regulations updating
- Chemical regulations consulting

Background

MSc in Earth Science, The University of Tokyo

AOKI Kenji