Central to the modern economy, chemicals and products they are used in are traded widely across borders. Because they add value to so many different consumer goods, chemicals are a staple economic building block for the member countries of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum.
Regulatory cooperation and good regulatory practices was the focus of this year’s third APEC Senior Officials Meeting (SOM III) hosted in the Philippines. Trade officials, regulators and industry representatives from the APEC region met for 3 days to share information, discuss various challenges facing the chemicals industry and agree on action items to address issues of mutual concern.
Helen Medina, USCIB’s vice president for product policy and innovation, attended SOM III from August 25-29, representing USCIB member views at several important meetings, including the APEC regulators forum, the Chemical Dialogue and a workshop on good regulatory practices.
In addition to Medina, other USCIB members attending those meetings included representatives from the American Chemistry Council, Boeing, American Petroleum Institute, British Petroleum, Chemours, Crowell & Moring, Nickel Institute, P&G and the Society of Chemical Manufactures and Affiliates.
Participants at these meetings agreed to work on the following items:
- A checklist to promote implementation of the Chemical Dialogue Best Practice Principles
- Outreach to the APEC Economic Committee for further cooperation, including proposing a potential chemical-specific panel during the EC’s Good Regulatory Practice, which will take place in Peru in 2016.
- A new document outlining the Chemical Industry Priorities for the Negotiation of Regional and Bilateral Free Trade Agreements
- A new Capacity Building Workshop related to Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals
At the APEC Chemical Dialogue, USCIB also brought to the table two new ideas to help bolster regulatory cooperation and streamline customs procedures in the APEC region: 1) a self-certification customs form, in which an importer of goods would self-certify that their imports comply, and 2) a regional capacity-building project related to the theme of “Analogue/Read-across use in Risk Assessment.”