China Pesticide Regulation: Current Status and Future Direction

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pesticideChina’s Regulations on Pesticide Administration (Decree 326 of the State Council) was promulgated and enacted on 29 November 2001. It is the overarching legislation for the pesticide sector, aiming to control the production, registration, marketing and use of pesticides.

On 20 July 2011, a draft proposal to amend the regulation was released for public consultation. Late last year, officials from the Institute for the Control of Agrochemicals (ICAMA), which is part of the Ministry of Agriculture (MoA), made numerous announcements on the impending promulgation of the final version (see Chemlinked News Released on Nov 16 2012).

However, after being all but approved by the standing committee of the State Council, barring a signature from the council chairman, the legislative process has come to an abrupt halt. According to MoA’s working programme, which was released in April 2013, the regulation may fall at the last legislative hurdle. This is perhaps unsurprising, given recent leadership changes and the need for consensus across a number of different authorities.

Cross-ministry management

It is necessary to register all pesticides with the MoA prior to placing them on the market. The agricultural department under the State Council is responsible for the registration, supervision and control of pesticides throughout the country.

Registration of new pesticides, when they are first produced or imported, consists of field trials, then temporary registration and finally full registration. ICAMA is responsible for reviewing the dossiers, then collecting technical suggestions and a decision from the National Committee of Pesticide Registration. If the registration process is successful, the MoA will issue a registration certificate of Pesticide Registration, known as ICAMA Registration.

In addition to pesticide registration, enterprises producing, formulating or repacking pesticides within the territory of China must obtain manufacturing approval from the Ministry of Industry & Information Technology (MIIT) or the General Administration for Quality Supervision, Inspection & Quarantine (AQSIQ).

If China has not yet established a national or industrial quality standard for the product, the approval certificate for pesticide manufacturing will be issued by MIIT. Products with national or industrial standards need AQSIQ-issued production licences.

The product will be marked with three identification numbers: an ICAMA registration certificate number; a MIIT/AQSIQ approval certificate/production licence number; and, a quality standard number. Consumers and overseas buyers use this ‘triplex identification’ to verify the identity of both products and manufacturers and to validate their authenticity.

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