By July 1, 2006, all nations that belong to the EU must enact local laws to enforce the realization of the Restriction of Hazardous Substances initiative (Waste of Electrical and Electronic Equipment) of the EU that bans, to a certain degree, several hazardous substances from electric and electronic products in order to enable the recycling of this equipment.

With the realization of these actions for environmental protection, the EU has taken a leadership role in the world. But this is just the beginning. There are clear indications that the USA, China and Japan are also working on similar initiatives. But the other areas are far behind the EU in terms of realization because no local or national laws support these initiatives. These other initiatives are not necessarily identical to the restrictions in the EU defined by ‘RoHS’ and ‘WEEE’ and it is not clear whether the restrictions in the EU are never going to change in the coming years. Additional hazardous substances could be added to the catalog in future or the defined maximum values could change over time.

This means that companies which plan to introduce measures or solutions to the manufacturing of RoHS compliant products that these measure or solutions need to be flexible, expandable and displayed for future needs.

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