The government has launched an online system designed to ensure the UK maintains current restrictions on the use of fluorinated gases and Ozone Depleting Substances (ODS) in the event of a no-deal Brexit.
Although most of the rules for F-Gas and ODS will not change, if the UK leaves the EU on 29 March with no deal, businesses that produce, supply, import, export or use bulk F-Gas or ODS, or manufacture or import equipment containing F-Gas or ODS, will need to register for the new system by 12 April.
The new requirements mean that:
- Businesses that produce or import F-Gas or ODS in the UK must register to the new UK system. Businesses are able to register between 11 February and 12 April 2019. UK businesses which are already registered on the EU system will receive an email from Defra about how to register. Other businesses can also register online
- Businesses that register before 29 March will be able to operate as normal from 30 March 2019. Anyone who registers between 30 March and 12 April 2019 would have to wait for their registration and quota application to be approved before they can trade
- Businesses looking to secure an F-Gas quota for the first time would need to wait until after 12 April before they can use their quota to import gas. Anyone registering after 12 April would not get a quota for 2019
- UK businesses that import products containing F-Gas or ODS must be authorised under the new UK system;
- UK businesses that export F-Gas or ODS, or products containing them, to the EU would need to set up an office in the EU or appoint an Only Representative to meet EU regulations; and
- Businesses and members of the public that use products that contain F-Gas or ODS should continue to operate as they do now as regulations and supply will remain the same.
Technicians qualified in the UK to service products that use F-Gas or ODS, such as refrigerators and air conditioners, will continue to be authorised to operate in the UK but not in the EU.
UK certified technicians who work in the EU should monitor decisions made by the EU Commission and Member State governments.
For more information, read the full guidance on the Defra website.