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Environmental Directives - Korea

The South Korean Government has enacted a law similar to both the EU RoHS and WEEE Directives. Dated December 12, 2006, this law is titled The Act for Resource Recycling of Electrical/Electronic Products and Automobiles, commonly referred to as Korea RoHS. Korea RoHS took effect on January 1, 2008. As of July 1, 2008, all Electrical and Electronic Products listed as “Target Products” must meet the requirements of this law.

Korea RoHS is designed to limit the use of certain Hazardous Substances in the design and manufacture of specified types of Electrical and Electronic Products and Automobiles, as well as, setting collection, recycling and recovery targets for Electrical and Electronic Products and Automobiles. The latest version has been designed to harmonize with
EU RoHS and WEEE Directives.

Korea RoHS implements Design for Recyclability. Target Products are recommended to follow these Design Guidelines, although these guidelines are not yet available. There is no penalty for Non-Compliance.

Korea RoHS restricts the use of the following Hazardous Materials, and provides for the listed Maximum Concentration Values:

  1. Lead: 1000 PPM

  2.  Cadmium: 100 PPM

  3. Mercury: 1000 PPM

  4. Hexavalent Chromium: 1000 PPM

  5.  Poly Brominated Biphenyl (PBB): 1000 PPM

  6.  Poly Brominated Diphenyl Ether (PBDE): 1000 PPM.

This matches EU RoHS.

The Exemptions allowed under the Korea RoHS Law also match the Exemptions in EU RoHS. As Korea RoHS wishes to harmonize with EU RoHS as much as possible, the changes currently underway by the EU Commission will be adopted by Korea when adopted.

The current list of Target Products covered by the South Korea RoHS Law, are Consumer Products for use in homes. This list includes:

  • Televisions
  • Refrigerators
  • Washing Machines
  • Air Conditioners
  • Personal Computers
  • Hi-Fi Systems (Audio Devices)
  • Portable Telephone Units (including Batteries and Chargers)
  • Printers
  • Copying Machines
  • Facsimile Machines

Other Electrical and Electronic Products are not included, although South Korea is reviewing the possibility of expanding their RoHS Law to covering all Products similar to EU RoHS.

Recycling Targets for the listed Target Products are provided. Any Manufacturer or Distributor of the Target Products will be required to report on a yearly basis on the numbers of Target Products they ship into South Korea, and on the Recycling activities they are involved in Product Disassembly Procedures, for the purposes of recycling, can be requested and should be made available within one month of the request. Mutual Aid Associations for recycling activities are being established in Korea to take care of the Recycling Fees and Reporting requirements associated with this law. Manufacturers may join Mutual Aid Associations to cover these activities.

Like the EU RoHS Directive, this law is Self-Declaratory. There are no marking, testing or certifying requirements associated with this law. Position Statements on Compliance, such as this, can be placed on a Company’s Web Site to satisfy all compliance requests.

Manufacturers are required to include Material Declarations with the Products they ship into South Korea. The Material Declaration Form is included in the final released version of the law, and contains basic organization and product information. This Declaration can also be posted on company Web Sites. The Material Declaration Document shall be in Korean.

In Summary:

  • The South Korean RoHS Law took affect January 1, 2008.
  • Korea RoHS will be consistent with European Union Directive 2002/95/EC, concerning restricted materials, Maximum Concentration Values and authorized Exemptions, but narrower in Scope.
  • The law is concerned with Recycling and Design for Recyclability.
  • Ten specific Consumer Products for use in the Home are covered by this law.
  • Vicor does not produce any products that would be considered a “Target Product” under the Korea RoHS Law. Consequently, all Vicor Products, whether EU RoHS Compliant or not, can be legally sold in South Korea, without any additional fees, marking, testing or certification.
  • Product Vicor sells to South Korea could be assembled into a “Target Product.” In this case, Vicor Customers should request EU RoHS Compliant Product, and Vicor may be asked to provide Material Declaration.

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