K-REACH Restricted Substances List 2018

Little Pro on 2017-05-08

The Korean Act on Registration and Evaluation, etc of Chemical Substances (also known as K-REACH) is not just about chemical substance registration. Like EU REACH, K-REACH also restricts  the use of certain hazardous substances in consumer products and articles to protect human health and the environment. In this article, we will give you a brief introduction to the restricted substances list  in South Korea and how to obtain the list.

Overview of K-REACH Restricted Substances List

The latest K-REACH restricted substances list (2017 version) restricts 12 chemical substances in various products such as paints, furniture and household products. The 12 chemical substances are:

  • Malachite green (CAS 10309-95-2) and its salts
  • Methyl bromide (CAS 74-83-9)
  • Carbon tetrachloride (CAS 56-23-5)
  • Tributyltin compounds (CAS 4782-29-0 and other CAS)
  • Formaldehyde (CAS 50-00-0)
  • Nonylphenol and nonylphenol ethoxylate (CAS 104-40-5 and other)
  • Chrysotile (CAS 12001-29-5)
  • Lead (CAS 7439-92-1)
  • Cadmium (CAS 7440-43-9)
  • Chromium (VI) compounds ( CAS 18540-29-9 and other)
  • Trichlorethylene (CAS 79-01-6)
  • Tetrachlorethylene (CAS 127-18-4)

You can find detailed restriction conditions for above chemical substances by inputting their CAS no. to the National Chemicals Information System(NCIS) below. 

K-REACH Restricted Substances List

The table below is an example of restriction conditions for Formaldehyde.

KE No. Chemical Name Restriction Conditions


Formaldehyde (CAS 50-00-0] and any mixture containing not less than 1%;
  • Manufacturing, import, sales, keeping/storage, transportation and use for veneers for furniture, textiles, baby products for babies under 3 years old, glue for wall paper, and softeners for leather processing are prohibited.

How to Obtain K-REACH Restricted Substances List

In March 2017, the MoE published Notice No. 2017-271 to amend the list of restricted substances under K-REACH. One amendment made is to restrict the use of Cr (VI) compounds in architectural paint .The consolidated list of restricted substances and their restriction conditions can be found in the notice below: 

If you wish to obtain the English version of above notice for a small fee, please contact us. Please note that K-REACH also maintains a list of prohibited substances and the manufacture/use of those substances is strictly prohibited. If you purchase the English version of the list of restricted substances, you can get the English version of the list of prohibited substances free of charge.

Legal Background

The Article 27 of K-REACH (Designation, etc. of Restricted or Prohibited Substances) states that: Where a chemical substance falls under any of the following, the Minister of Environment (MoE) shall designate and announce the relevant chemical substance as a restricted or prohibited substance after consultation with the heads of relevant central administrative agencies and deliberation by the Evaluation Committee as prescribed by Presidential Decree:

  • 1. Where the chemical substance is deemed to pose a risk base on the results of review of hazards and assessment of risks:
  • 2. Where an international organization, etc. deems the chemical substance poses a risk;
  • 3. Where the manufacture, importation or use of the chemical substance is prohibited or restricted in accordance with an international agreement, etc.;
  • 4. Where the chemical substance falls under substances subject to permission the designation of which has been terminated on the ground under subparagraph 1 of Article 26.

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