The European Court of Justice has decided that the fine levied by the Swedish regulatory authority, KEMI, on the “Canadian Oil Company” is justified. The company had already imported about 392 tons of chemicals into Sweden in 2009 – without listing them on the KEMI product register. The Swedish agency mandates such a registration.
The company justified its failure to register by stating that it had followed the requirements of the REACH Regulation. The requirement to register the chemicals with the Swedish agency hindered the free exchange of substances, an exchange that is already covered legally by REACH. The “Canadian Oil Company“ first turned to the highest court in Sweden, which referred the case to the European Court of Justice. The Court based its decision on the finding that EU regulations never repeal national law. In fact, the national law contributes to safe handling of chemicals and thereby supports the protection of human beings and the environment.
The environmental agencies in the neighboring countries of Denmark, Finland, and Norway welcome the judgement because they have product registration systems that are similar to that of Sweden. The Danish Agriculture minister, Esben Lunde Larsen, hailed the decision and states that the protection of citizens that the product register provides would now continue.
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