Consultation on the Marketing and Use of Second-Hand Articles containing Asbestos

Closed 15 Aug 2013

Opened 18 Jul 2013


This consultation is seeking views on amending the Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals (REACH) Enforcement Regulations 2008, to adopt a derogation from EU legislation to allow the sale of second-hand articles containing asbestos. 

The sale and use of asbestos has been restricted in the UK and the EU for many years.  However, under the EU REACH Regulation, the scope of the restriction was unintentionally extended to cover the sale and use of second-hand articles containing asbestos. They now must have the asbestos content removed if placed on the market - creating potential health risks from disturbing otherwise secure asbestos.  Alternatively they may be disposed of before the end of their useful life.  This imposes unnecessary costs on business and others.

A derogation under EU law is now available which allows for Member States to provide for exemptions so that second-hand articles containing asbestos can still be placed on the market, subject to conditions to ensure a high level of protection of human health.

The UK proposes to adopt this by amending the REACH Enforcement Regulations 2008, depending on the outcome of this consultation. It is anticipated that this change will save business £29m per year. 

For more information, please download our consultation documents (below).

  • Consultation Letter
  • Consultation Paper
  • Impact Assessment


We would welcome views on amending the REACH Enforcement Regulations 2008, to adopt a derogation allowing the sale of second-hand articles containing asbestos. 

Please answer the consultation questions using the online survey. If you prefer, you may also send your response via email/post by 15 August (please refer to the consultation letter for further details).  Respondents in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland may wish to copy their responses to the relevant Devolved Administration.

What happens next

Consultees have four weeks to send in their comments.  All relevant responses to the consultation will be considered carefully.  A summary of responses, including the next steps will be published as soon as possible after the closure of the consultation.  Paper copies as well as a large print version will be available on request.


  • Charities/Voluntary Organisations
  • SME businesses
  • Leisure industry
  • Tourism industry


  • Chemicals and pesticides