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Sri Lanka - Final Regulatory Action
Paraquat CAS number:
Date circular:

Chemical name: 4,4'-Bipyridinium, 1,1'-dimethyl-

Final regulatory action has been taken for the category: Pesticide

Final regulatory action: The chemical is Severely Restricted

Use or uses prohibited by the final regulatory action:

200g paraquat ion/l formulation all uses

Pesticide use or uses that remain allowed:

65 g paraquat ion/l formulation

The final regulatory action was based on a risk or hazard evaluation: Yes

Summary of the final regulatory action:

All paraquat formulations including the formulation with the inteon TM and other similar technologies to reduce their paraquat ion concentration to 65g/liter with effect from 1st of January 2008.
Phase out the use of paraquat in three years
The existing stocks of higher concentrations of paraquat formulation are to be allowed to deplete through the regular marketing channel
The annual quantity of paraquat formulation sold in the country will be frozen at the current level.
The phasing out scheme of the product to be worked out at the end of the year 2008 upon re-evaluation of the risk associated with reduced strength 65 g paraquat ion/l formulations

The reasons for the final regulatory action were relevant to: Human health

Summary of known hazards and risks to human health:

Restrictions on the import and sales of WHO Class I toxicity pesticides in 1995 and endosulfan in 1998, in Sri Lanka have coincided with reductions in pesticide deaths in both men and women of all ages1. Due to regulation of highly toxic pesticide Sri Lanka has shown fall in Case Fatality Proportion amidst a rising incidence of self-poisoning2. There are around 400-500 deaths each year in Sri Lanka from paraquat poisining3. The ingestion of paraquat has around 65% mortality5, much higher that any other agrochemical. For example, the other commonly used herbicides (propanil, glyphosate and MCPA) have a mortality of between 4% and 8%. Unlike other agrochemicals, paraquat has no proven antidotes and supportive care is relatively ineffective at preventing death. A substantial reduction of poisonings deaths is unlikely to be achieved by focusing solely on in hospital care. Restrictions on availability of highly toxic poisons in rural communities have been shown as an important strategy to reduce the number of intentional self-poisoning deaths. Poisoned patients chose their poison on the basis of availability; most has obtained the poison either in, or near, to heir home4.
Considering the above and other related information it was concluded that the very high rate pf deaths due to paraquat poisoning caused by its inherent toxic properties, specially in misuse among the farming communities of Sri Lanka is unacceptable.

Expected effect of the final regulatory action in relation to human health:

To reduce human mortality rate do to highly toxic pesticides

Date of entry into force of the final regulatory action: 01/01/2008