Rotterdam Convention scientific committee successfully concludes its review of hazardous pesticides

The 18th Chemical Review Committee recommended that methyl bromide and paraquat be listed under Annex III to the Convention.

The 18th meeting of the Chemical Review Committee (CRC-18) of the Rotterdam Convention on the Prior Informed Consent Procedure for Certain Hazardous Chemicals and Pesticides in International Trade convened in Rome, Italy, from 19 to 23 September 2022. Held at the headquarters of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), CRC-18 recommended that two pesticides, paraquat and methyl bromide, be listed in Annex III to the Rotterdam Convention. The CRC experts will now start developing draft decision guidance documents to accompany the recommendations on those pesticides when brought to the Convention’s governing body, the Conference of the Parties.

Paraquat is a highly toxic herbicide, widely used for weed control, while methyl bromide is primarily applied in fumigation sites. In addition, methyl bromide is a potent ozone-depleting substance, controlled by the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer.

CRC-18 was chaired by Ms. Noluzuko Gwayi from South Africa, leading the intense deliberations between thirty government-designated experts. Almost fifty observers representing 20 governments and seven non-governmental organisations also participated in the meeting.

The CRC experts finalised two draft decision guidance documents on terbufos and iprodione, chemicals that were recommended for listing in Annex III to the Rotterdam Convention at the Committee’s seventeenth meeting. The recommendations on the listing of iprodione and terbufos, together with these draft decision guidance documents, will be considered during the next meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Rotterdam Convention (COP-11), which will be held in May 2023 in Geneva. Should COP-11, based on the recommendations of the Committee, decide to adopt amend Annex III to the Convention to list these two pesticides, they will become subject to the Prior Informed Consent procedure, which enables the 165 Parties to the Rotterdam Convention to share responsibility on and take informed decisions on potential future imports.

Presently, Annex III to the Convention lists 52 chemicals, 35 of which are pesticides. Terbufos had been registered for use as an insecticide in various crops, and banned by Parties that notified the Convention Secretariat of their actions, which among other reasons were due to its high risk for aquatic and terrestrial organisms and risk to human health under conditions of use. Iprodione had been registered for use as a fungicide in vines, fruit trees and vegetables, and had been banned by the notifying Parties as it is highly toxic for aquatic life and potentially causes cancer.

In addition to the above, CRC-18 undertook the herculean task of reviewing a significant number of notifications of Final Regulatory Actions to ban or severely restrict ten pesticides, received from: China, Colombia, Ecuador, Indonesia, Malaysia, Mozambique, Norway, Türkiye and Uruguay,.

The Rotterdam Convention promotes shared responsibility and facilitates cooperation among its Parties to protect human health and the environment from the adverse effects of hazardous chemicals and pesticides.


The Secretariat of the Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm Conventions (BRS Secretariat) brings together the three leading multilateral environmental agreements that share the common objective of protecting human health and the environment from hazardous chemicals and wastes.

For information on the Rotterdam Convention, contact: Christine Fuell, FAO Senior Technical Officer,

For media inquiries, contact: Marisofi Giannouli, BRS Associate Public Information Officer,