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Chemicals subject to the Stockholm and Rotterdam Conventions

​​​​​​​​​​On 18 August 2004, Australia became a party to two international agreements relating to the trade of certain hazardous chemicals. These agreements are the:

To implement these conventions, controls on import, manufacture, use and export have been introduced under the:

The Agvet Regulations prohibit certain activities in relation to these chemicals either absolutely or subject to conditions. The Customs Regulations complement the Agvet Regulations by introducing controls at the border. Details on the activities and the relevant controls are given below.

A notice given under section 69C of the Agricultural and Veterinary Chemicals (Administration) Act 1992 in the Commonwealth of Australia Agricultural and Veterinary Chemical Gazette of 1 June 2004 indicated that new controls were being introduced.

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Each of the Regulations requires a person to lodge a written application for activities requiring permission (or permits), as indicated below. An application for permission under the Agvet Regulations must include information about the applicant and specific information on the activity. In certain circumstances additional information may be required (see notice in Agricultural and Veterinary Chemical Gazette 1 June 2004) or further information sought to allow the application to be processed.

Applications for permission to import or export chemicals that are controlled under the Agvet Regulations or the Customs Regulations should be made using the secure online permit application system. When a permit has been granted, a copy is sent to the applicant by email.


The import of chemicals controlled under the Stockholm Convention is prohibited, except with written permission from an authorised officer in the following circumstances:

  • for environmentally sound disposal
  • for use as reference standards or of quantities to be used in laboratory-scale research.

The import of chemicals listed under the Rotterdam Convention is controlled by domestic legislation administered by the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority (APVMA). More information can be found on Importing Agricultural Chemicals or Veterinary Medicines from the APVMA website.

Manufacture and use

The manufacture and use of chemicals subject to the Stockholm Convention are absolutely prohibited except as allowed under specific exemptions or acceptable purposes under the convention.

No specific manufacture or use controls are applicable for chemicals subject to the Rotterdam Convention, as this convention controls only import and export.


The export of chemicals that are listed in the Stockholm Convention is prohibited, except with written permission in the following circumstances: 

  • for environmentally sound disposal 
  • for use as reference standards or of quantities to be used in laboratory-scale research.

The export of chemicals that are listed in the Rotterdam Convention requires written permission. Permission will be granted if the export meets the requirements of the importing party and the following requirements are met:

  • the importing country is a party to the convention or
  • the chemical is controlled under the convention as a severely hazardous pesticide formulation, but the formulation to be exported is at a lower concentration.

The permission to export to a party to the convention may require the exporter to fulfill certain conditions as specified in the permit.

Chemicals to which these controls apply

For those chemicals that are subject to both the Stockholm and Rotterdam Conventions, the controls imposed are those under the Stockholm Convention as these are more stringent than those imposed under the Rotterdam Convention.

Note: Methoxychlor, Oxychlordane, HCH (mixed isomers) (BHC) and Lindane (g-BHC, g-HCH) are also listed on Schedule 9 of the Customs (Prohibited Imports) Regulations 1956 – written permission is required for import. These chemicals are not controlled because of an obligation under any international agreement.

Chemicals listed under the Stockholm Convention

Chemical nameCAS No.
Aldrin (HHDN)309-00-2
DDT (pp’-DDT)50-29-3
Dieldrin (HEOD)60-57-1
Hexachlorobenzene (HCB)118-74-1
Toxaphene (camphechlor)8001-35-2

Chemicals listed under the Rotterdam Convention

Chemical nameCAS No.
2,4,5-T and its salts and esters93-76-5
Dinitro-ortho-cresol and its salts534-52-1  
Dinoseb and its salts and esters88-85-7
Ethylene dibromide (EDB)106-93-4
Ethylene dichloride107-06-2
Ethylene oxide75-21-8 
HCH (mixed isomers) (BHC) (HCH) excludes gamma isomer – see Lindane608-73-1
Lindane (g-BHC, g-HCH)58-89-9
Mercury compounds - see table below 
Parathion (ethyl)56-38-2
Pentachlorophenol and its salts and esters87-86-5
All Tributyl tin compounds including:
Tributyltin oxide
Tributyltin fluoride
Tributyltin methacrylate
Tributyltin benzoate
Tributyltin chloride
Tributyltin linoleate
Tributyltin naphthenate

Dustable powder formulations containing a combination of:
benomyl at or above 7% and
carbofuran at or above 10% and
thiram at or above 15%


Mercury compounds controlled under the Rotterdam Convention

Chemical NameCAS no
2-(Acetoxymercuric) ethanol4665-55-8
Cyano(methylmercuric) guanidine502-39-6
Mercuric acetate1600-27-7
Mercuric chloride7487-94-7
Mercuric oxide21908-53-2
Mercurous chloride7546-30-7
Mercury naphthenate1336-96-5
Mercury oleate1191-80-6
Mercury pentanedione14024-55-6
Mercury phenate588-66-9
Methylmercury 2,3 dihydoxypropyl mercaptide2597-95-7
Methylmercury 8-quinolinolate86-85-1
Methylmercury acetate108-07-6
Methylmercury benzoate3626-13-9
Methylmercury hydroxide1184-57-2
Methylmercury nitrite2591-97-9
Methylmercury propionate5903-10-6
N-(phenylmercuric) urea2279-64-3
Phenylethylmercuric salicylate54-64-8
Phenylmercuric acetate62-38-4
Phenylmercuric ammonium acetate53404-67-4
Phenylmercuric ammonium propionate53404-68-5
Phenylmercuric borate102-98-7
Phenylmercuric carbonate53404-69-6
Phenylmercuric chloride100-56-1
Phenylmercuric dimethyldithiocarbamate32407-99-1
Phenylmercuric formamide22894-47-9
Phenylmercuric hydroxide100-57-2
Phenylmercuric lactate122-64-5
Phenylmercuric laurylmercaptide-
Phenylmercuric monoethanol ammonium acetate5822-97-9
Phenylmercuric monoethanol ammonium lactate53404-70-9
Phenylmercuric napthenate31632-68-5
Phenylmercuric nitrate55-68-5
Phenylmercuric oleate104-68-9
Phenylmercuric propionate103-27-5
Phenylmercuric salicylate28086-13-7
Phenylmercuric thiocyanate16751-55-6
Phenylmercuric threthanol ammonium lactate23319-66-6


Under the Agricultural and Veterinary Chemicals (Administration) Act 1992 a person must not import, manufacture, use or export an active constituent for a proposed or existing chemical product or a chemical product in contravention of a condition or restriction prescribed by a regulation. A penalty of 300 penalty units may apply.

Other permissions

Granting permission under the Customs or Agvet Regulations does not replace any requirement for permission under any other legislation, including from the APVMA.

Further information

Contact information

Applications for permission to import or export chemicals that are controlled under the Agvet Regulations or the Customs Regulations should be made using the online permit application system. Other inquiries can be directed to:

Authorised Officer
Agvet Chemicals Policy Section
Agvet Chemicals Branch
Department of Agriculture and Water Resources​
GPO Box 858

Email: Controlled Chemicals