ERA magazine Gravure News issue 184 published

Gravure News 184

The ERA magazine Gravure News includes reports about events, trends and technical developments, as well as company reports and socio-economic issues with respect to the gravure industry. The magazine is published at least once a year and is circulated in a print run of 2000 copies worldwide within the gravure community.

In this issue:

  • Chromium trioxide authorization
  • ERA conferences 2019
  • ERA’s 1st symposium in Pakistan
  • PSR update

The Gravure News magazine is available to the gravure industry and those interested.

If you want to advertise in a future issue of Gravure News please contact the ERA office.

Working together for the future of gravure!

by James Siever, ERA Secretary General

ERA’s role was always to support the joint work of our industry to secure the future of the gravure process.

This is currently the case in the ongoing authorization process for chromium trioxide which is indispensable in cylinder plating. Some 1,2 million gravure cylinders are produced annually in Europe, and their production depends on the use of chromium trioxide.

An alternative to replace chromium trioxide is still not in sight. Trials with other substances or processes have not yet shown a breakthrough. All assertions about possible alternatives are premature. It must be noted that there is currently no alternative which is economically realistic.

Many other industries such as automotive and aviation are also dependent on chromium trioxide: every year in Europe 10 000 tonnes of chromium trioxide are used for industrial purposes. Only 170 tonnes are used by the gravure industry, i.e. the share of our industry in the total annual use in Europe is less than 2 %.

After a long and complex authorization process the submission of the Chromium Trioxide Authorization Consortium (CTACSub), which covers our industry as downstream user, was recommended by the competent European Chemical Agency (ECHA) for approval with an expiration date of 21 September 2024.

Unfortunately the EU Commission withdrew their approval in February last year following a motion by the European Parliament to reject the approval of the CTAC submission. Thus, almost ten years since the beginning of the authorization process, the final decision on the CTAC submission is still pending.

It is still unclear when the EU Commission will take their final decision. However, even though green and environmentalist groups are strongly lobbying against an authorisation for chromium trioxide, a negative decision seems to be unlikely, as this would have fatal consequences for many industries in Europe.

In any case, our industry is allowed to further use chromium trioxide until a final decision is taken. And for the time beyond the expiration of the authorization in 2024 at the latest a new submission will be prepared by Kaspar Walter on behalf of our industry.

To enable a successful submission ERA will co-ordinate the collection of technical and socio-economic data and the exchange of information within our industry. Meetings and workshops are being organised for this purpose.

And ERA will continue to lobby the case of our industry towards the responsible authorities in the national governments and the EU Commission by pushing gravure’s scientific, economic and political arguments.

For sake of its members and the whole industry, ERA will do all in its means to secure gravure’s future.

It is now up to the gravure industry to support the ERA as its trustworthy mouthpiece in the ongoing authorization process.