Handbook on Chemicals

The Handbook on Chemicals is an important tool which aims at assisting States Parties in the identification of individual chemicals covered by the three Schedules in the Annex on Chemicals of the Chemical Weapons Convention.

As part of the Declarations Handbook (i.e., Appendix 2), the Handbook on Chemicals (HBC) is an important tool which aims at assisting States Parties in the identification of individual chemicals covered by the three Schedules in the Annex on Chemicals of the Chemical Weapons Convention (hereinafter “scheduled chemicals”).

The HBC is updated and revised on a regular basis to incorporate any new scheduled chemicals that States Parties declare as well as any changes in the identifiers such as the Chemical Abstracts Service Registry Numbers (CAS RN) and Harmonized System Codes (HS codes) assigned to scheduled chemicals.

The 2022 version of the HBC supersedes the previous 2019 version and includes:

  • 2,143 scheduled chemicals declared by States Parties from 1997 to the end of 2021 including 60 Schedule 1 chemicals newly added to the Annex on Chemicals declared by State Parties from 2020 to the end of 2021.
  • changes to some HS codes in accordance with the HS Nomenclature 2022 (Noted: a more detailed review of all HS codes in the HBC is required to ensure fully alignment with the 2022 HS codes;
  • editorial changes to some chemical names;
  • changes to some OPCW keys and, where possible, OPCW keys for certain scheduled chemicals have been replaced with their respective CAS RNs; and

The chemicals in the HBC are indexed in ascending order by:

  • schedule number (Schedule 1, Schedule 2 and Schedule 3);
  • entry number in each schedule (e.g. 2B04, 2B05, 2B06, etc.); and
  • CAS RN or OPCW Key.

Chemical names in the HBC have been created in accordance with the ‘Rules for Naming Compounds in the OPCW Central Analytical Database (OCAD)‘ and OPCW Keys created (where the CAS RN is not available) in accordance with the ‘Guidelines for Assignment of the Chemical Keys to the Scheduled Chemicals‘.

Although the HBC contains information on all scheduled chemicals declared to the Technical Secretariat, it is not a comprehensive list of all declarable scheduled chemicals, and as such should only be used as a tool to assist in the identification of chemicals. The OPCW has made available on its website a more comprehensive database, namely, the OPCW Online Scheduled Chemicals Database (OSCD) containing up to 34,300 scheduled chemicals, including 2,143 chemicals detailed in the HBC. A new version of the OPCW OSCD is expected to be released in June 2022.

Feedback

The Technical Secretariat welcomes States Parties’ feedback, if any, on the 2022 version of the HBC by sending any comments and suggestions to the Declarations Branch.

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