I am downstream user. Or am I?
When asked, companies generally respond with: “Of course we are downstream user! We purchase our chemicals from Supplier X.” Nonetheless, further examination frequently reveals that Supplier X is a non-European company, and as such, does not have any REACH responsibilities.
In order to relieve their European customers of the regulatory obligation to register the imported substances, non-EU suppliers may nominate an “Only Representative” (OR) within the boundaries of the EEA (European Economic Area) to ensure REACH and CLP compliance. However, where they have not assigned an OR, each of the European companies is an importer under REACH, a role that comes with other, more complex regulatory obligations. Therefore, we advise to double check where your supplier is located, if an OR has been appointed, and if the REACH and CLP obligations have been met for the chemicals you use in your daily activities.