A Rationale for ICAMA’s Establishment of the Pesticide Registration Review Office

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e we provide an explanation delivered by Mr. Zong Fulin, Division Director of the newly formed office in which he explains the rationale for the establiIn March 2013, ICAMA (Institute for the Control of Agrochemicals, Ministry of Agricultural) established a new division called the Pesticide Registration Review Office. The newly formed office has been tasked with reassessing registered pesticide products currently circulating in the marketplace. In this articlshment of this office and the necessity for reassessment of registered pesticides.

China implemented pesticide registration in 1982, however since implementation post market supervision of registered products has been grossly inadequate and poorly equipped to guarantee the safe use of pesticides and minimize the negative environmental and social impact associated with their use. Indeed in the past the only major regulatory hurdle for pesticide products has been the renewal of pesticide registration. In reality this checkpoint has been little more than a formality with successful renewal usually a foregone conclusion. Indeed the only real impetus for revoking registration has been when serious adverse effects or events force the governments to institute a regulatory ban, comparable to closing the stable door after the horse has bolted.

Regulation and enforcement within this industry has ranged from inefficient to corrupt to extremely criminal. The industry has been plagued by practices such as the sale of “registration status" and the indefinite extension of registration both of which have continued to hamper implementation of effective and safe regulations. From a purely economic standpoint, not mentioning the social and ethical issues, the consequences of this archaic system has negatively affected the development of the Chinese pesticide industry since its inception. The system has severely hampered domestic R&D and resulted in an industry flooded by inferior quality “me-too” (generic) products. In the short term this paradigm has paid huge economic dividends. However the long term impact is now finally being reflected in China’s dismal environmental problems and an industry in disarray, poorly poised to meet the demands of increased global regulations and technological trends prioritizing safer substitutes and biocides.

 

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