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European Union Denies Exemption for the Use of Hexavalent Chromium for Electrical/Electronic Equipment

The European Union continues to issue regulatory directives restricting or limiting the use of metals in products such as the ELV, RoHS, and WEEE. Providing the surface finishing industry with information on compliance and testing methodology, understanding the specific requirements of these directives and how they impact global supply chains, and positioning the industry to more competitive in global markets is critical for the metal finishing industry and its customers.

Historical view: In late 2006, the EU initiated a stakeholder consultation process to examine whether an exemption for the use of hexavalent chromium for electrical and electronic equipment was appropriate. In January 2007, the industry submitted comments to the EU on a proposed exemption for the use of hexavalent chromium plating for electrical and electronic equipment. The comments cited the need for hexavalent chromium plating for corrosion resistance and good electrical conductivity. The EU recently decided to deny the exemption request, citing the availability of alternatives to hexavalent chromium coatings for electrical and electronic equipment.

For a copy of the industry comments, or for more information on the EU’s Final Report, please visit www.nasf.org.

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