Chemicals manufactured or imported before 1 January 2017 can continue to be supplied without needing to meet the labelling requirements of the model Work Health and Safety Regulations, according to Safe Work Australia CEO Michelle Baxter.
This approach was agreed upon in response to concerns raised by chemical suppliers, said Baxter.
“This approach will ensure a smooth transition to the globally harmonised system, or GHS, and will avoid an unnecessary burden on suppliers to re-label existing chemical stock,” she said.
“From 1 January next year, hazardous chemicals may only be supplied to other workplaces without GHS labelling if they were manufactured or imported on or before 31 December 2016, and were correctly labelled at that time.
“In 2017, manufacturers and importers operating under harmonised work health and safety laws must label their hazardous chemicals in accordance with the GHS under the model WHS Regulations.
“I encourage all suppliers to accept only correctly labelled stock from this point forward,” said Baxter.
Each jurisdiction will be implementing this approach individually within their work health and safety laws.