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What is the regulatory regime for asbestos?

Prohibited activities

No specific regulatory regime exists for asbestos. Asbestos is regulated by the regulations relating to the Mineral Resources Law and the Law on Prevention of Environmental Pollution by Solid Waste.

Main obligations

See Question 12, Prohibited activities.

Permits and regulator

There is a permit system for the mining of asbestos (Article 12, Notice of Ministry of Land and Resources). The permit is approved and issued by the department in charge of geology and mineral resources of governments at provincial, autonomous regional or directly administered municipal level.

The entity or individual must obtain a permit for the safe use of hazardous chemicals. The business operations (including storage) of hazardous chemicals also require a permit. Permits are issued by supervision and administration divisions of work safety departments.

For details on permits and regulators related to asbestos waste, see Question 12.

Penalties

See Question 6, Penalties.

On 24 June 2017, the Supreme People’s Court issued an Interpretation on Several Issues Concerning the Application of Law in the Trial of Disputes over Mining Rights (Interpretation). Article 22 of the Interpretation provides that if the Supreme People’s Court finds in the trial of disputes over mining rights that there is any illegal act (such as undocumented exploration or exploitation, fraudulent exploration qualification or geological data, or the investigation and exploitation fails to fulfil the obligation of restoring the ecological environment, and so on), the court can submit judicial suggestions to competent administrative departments. Those departments must deal with it in accordance with law; and if a crime is suspected the case must be transferred to the investigating organ for handling.