New substances: advisory note September 2007

Australia Recognizes Canada as a "Competent Authority" Under Its Industrial Chemicals (Notification and Assessment) Act 1989

(PDF Version - 22 Ko)

This advisory note is intended to inform stakeholders about the recognition of the Canadian regulations governing the notification of new industrial chemicals under the "Foreign Scheme Provision" of the Industrial Chemicals (Notification and Assessment) Act 1989 (ICNA Act) of Australia.

As well, this note is to inform stakeholders of the renewal (May 2007) of the Cooperative Arrangement between the Commonwealth of Australia, as represented by the Director, National Industrial Chemicals Notification and Assessment Scheme (NICNAS) of Australia and the Department of the Environment of Canada and the Department of Health of Canada, on the Subject of Sharing Information on New Industrial Chemicals.

In August 2007 under Australian legislation, Canada (New Substances Program) was recognized as an Approved Foreign Scheme under the "Foreign Schemes Provisions" in Australia’s Industrial Chemicals (Notification and Assessment) Act 1989 (ICNA Act). Recognition of Canada’s New Substances Notification Regulation (Chemicals and Polymers) means that eligible Canadian assessments can be taken into account as an Approved Foreign Scheme when new chemicals are being evaluated under Australia’s National Industrial Chemicals Notification and Assessment Scheme (NICNAS). Please see the media release: Cooperative Arrangement between the Commonwealth of Australia, as represented by the Director, National Industrial Chemicals Notification and Assessment Scheme (NICNAS) of Australia and the Department of the Environment of Canada and the Department of Health of Canada, on the Subject of Sharing Information on New Industrial Chemicals.

By way of this provision, the government can gain from shared technical information to be used in the assessment of new industrial chemicals. Industry will benefit through cost savings as NICNAS provides a fee discount where information is provided from a comparable evaluation in Canada. The New Substances Program foresees an increase in requests for information from Australian industry as a result of Canada’s being recognized under the ICNA Act. Please visit the National Industrial Chemicals Notification and Assessment Scheme (NICNAS) Website for more information on the Foreign Schemes Provision.

In the same spirit, the Canada/Australia Arrangement that was first signed in 2002 was renewed in 2007 with a view to learning from one another’s expertise and providing gains to industry when information is requested pertaining to notifications under the Arrangement. Both countries have recognized the value of the Arrangement and agreed to renew it with continued benefit to all participants.

The Canadian and Australian governments note the substantial numbers of industrial chemicals being introduced annually in both countries and the level of effort and resources required to complete assessments. The efficiencies of resources and potential cost reduction that would result from enhanced information and work sharing between programs are viewed to be significant.

Through this cooperative Arrangement, the New Substances Program has access to a greater pool of expertise to address emerging regulatory and scientific issues, sharing scientific information, and contributing to simplifying the notification and assessment process, which will ultimately reduce costs to government and industry.

The Arrangement continues to operate within the aims of both governments to provide the utmost in protection to human health and the environment.

If you are interested in submitting a new substance notification under the Canada/Australia Arrangement, or have any questions or comments about the new arrangement, procedures or the proposed fees for this service in Canada, please contact us by mail at:

Canada/Australia Arrangement
New Substances Division
Environment Canada
8th Floor, Fontaine Building
351 St. Joseph Blvd.
Gatineau QC K1A 0H3

New Substances Notification Information Line
Telephone: 1-800-567-1999 (toll-free in Canada) or 1-819-953-7156 (outside Canada)
Fax: 1-819-953-7155
E-mail: nsn-infoline@ec.gc.ca
New Substances Website

Original signed by

Bernard Madé
Director
New Substances Division
Science and Risk Assessment Directorate
Environment Canada

Signed on December 4, 2007

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