Importer: New Rule for Hazardous Substances (You have 30 Days)
Most businesses that make or import hazardous substances have to give some basic contact information to Environmental Protection Authority (EPA). This information helps the EPA effectively manage New Zealand’s hazardous substances and enables us to communicate with manufacturers and importers and keep them up to date and informed.
The new rules came into effect on 19 November 2015. Your details must be provided to EPA within 30 days of the first time you import or manufacture a hazardous substance after that date. You will only need to do this once, although you will need to keep EPA updated if your details change.
Do this online, it should only take a few minutes, by clicking THIS link.
How do I know if I am considered an importer or manufacturer?
This rule applies to anyone who imports or manufactures a hazardous product for a commercial use. Commercial use can mean for sale or trade, but it also applies if you are importing or manufacturing a hazardous substance to use in a business setting – for example, a beautician might import a product to use on clients in his or her salon.
The only case where you would not be required to give us your contact details is if you are importing or manufacturing a product that you will keep for your personal use, and no other purpose.
How do I know if what I import or manufacture is considered a hazardous substance?
It is your responsibility to know if your product is a hazardous substance. This is a broad term, which covers many different products, from soaps and crayons to petrol and explosives. We have some information that might help you assess your product. Click HERE.
What will the EPA do with my information?
They will use your information to communicate with you to make sure you are aware of changes to the regime around managing the risks of hazardous substances. It will also help us understand the industry.
What should I do if my details change?
As soon as your details change, you should email the EPA to ask us to update your details. They will need to know your name, address and phone and email contact.
Will international exporters who are sending hazardous substances to New Zealand need to provide their details?
No, the Hazardous Substances (Importers and Manufacturers Information) Notice 2015 applies to the New Zealand entity which is importing or manufacturing hazardous substances.
Doesn’t the EPA already have this information? Why do I need to provide it again?
The EPA has a large number of stakeholder contact lists, however their data does not indicate whether organisations or people are importers, manufacturers or have some other interest in our work. They need to collect details so they can differentiate importers and manufacturers from other types of businesses they may hold information about and so they can be sure they have a comprehensive list. They will be using your contact information to keep you informed about any new rules or changes you should be aware of.
Do large organisations (eg oil companies) need to provide their details?
If you are a NZ based organisation and are importing and/or manufacturing hazardous substances then yes, you need to provide the information.
If an organisation has imported hazardous substances in the past but is no longer importing does it still need to provide its details?
No, you only need to notify us if you import or manufacture a hazardous substance after 19 November 2015. You have 30 days from the time of import or manufacture to provide us your details. The notice applies to importers and manufacturers of hazardous substances but does not apply to people making or importing the hazardous substances for personal use.
Does EPA require a notification each time we import?
No, the Hazardous Substances (Importers and Manufacturers Information) Notice 2015, only requires you to provide us this information once. However, you do need to notify us if your details change.
Importers and manufacturers must ensure that the hazardous substances they import or manufacture are approved under the Hazardous Substances and New Organisms Act 1996. If your product is not approved you will need to apply for an approval. More details on approvals for hazardous substances and how to apply are here.
We’d love to answer any of your questions! Contact us now.
P.S. Do you know of other people that will find this article useful? Please share it on social media. Thank you!