National Government Interventions in a Global Arena
Edited by Frank Wijen, Kees Zoeteman, Jan Pieters and Paul van Seters
Chapter 14: Mutual Recognition in the Testing of Chemicals through the OECD
Rob Visser1 SUMMARY The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)’s mutual acceptance of data (MAD) system plays an important role in the testing and registration of chemical products. OECD member countries and other states adhering to the system mutually recognise the outcomes of safety tests of chemicals conducted by a participating country. Standardised guidelines and principles are followed during such tests. Representatives from science, government, industry, civil society, and intergovernmental organisations are involved in the development of such guidelines and principles. The mutual recognition of test data has important advantages: enhanced protection of the environment and public health, increased cost efficiency, minimised non-tariff trade barriers, and the sharing of an increasing burden. Potential drawbacks are the lengthy process of obtaining consensus and the politicisation of the system. Globalisation has magnified the merits and drawbacks of the system. INTRODUCTION The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development is an intergovernmental organisation established in 1960. It groups 34 industrialised countries: 21 European Union (EU) member states (Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Slovenia, the Slovak Republic, Spain, Sweden, and the 1 Any opinions expressed in this chapter do not necessarily represent those of the OECD or its member countries. For general information on the OECD’s work in this field, see OECD, 2010a. 415 M2782 - WIJEN TEXT.indd 415 16/11/2011 11:30 416 A Handbook of Globalisation and Environmental Policy, Second Edition Table 14.1 OECD is: Functions of the...
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