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VOC Regulations In Your Area

As there are many different VOC regulations affecting PC products around the world you may wish to know which apply in your region. This site provides a brief summary of current Protective Coatings - related VOC regulations that exist around the world.


Legislation exists in Hong Kong to control the VOC content of PC products. Specific paint categories have their own VOC limits associated.

In mainland China, there is a Consumption Tax (4% based on invoice value) levied on all coatings with VOC over 420g/l manufactured or imported into China.

There are also plans to bring in a pollution expense, which will apply to all coating applicators. This will be a charge per kilogram of VOC emitted. Figures have not yet been agreed.

In addition, the Shanghai area plans to bring in a categories and limits-based piece of legislation, where certain types of paints have certain VOC limits. This is expected to be in force in January 2017.


When PC products are applied to a building or on site Directive 2004/42/CE applies. This is a piece of legislation which has specific limits for specific types of paint.

When used in a facility (e.g. paint shop) the Solvent Emissions Directive 1999/13/EC will apply, where the applicator has to stick to a specific weight limit of solvent depending on the amount of paint applied.


A VOC emission fee system is in place which applies to manufacturers and industrial users of all coatings.


Canada has an architectural coatings rule, where VOC limits are specified depending on the coating category (e.g. Industrial Maintenance, High-Temperature…)


No legislation in place yet but VOC producing facilities are expected to control the concentration of VOC in waste air streams to below 700ppm.


In South Korea Protective Coating products are subject to VOC regulations affecting the following:

  • PC products used on a construction site.

  • Bridge-coating operations

  • Marine and offshore operations

Each of these rules specifies VOC limits depending on the paint category (e.g. Cosmetic Finish, Primer…).


The USA operates a very complex system of regulation at a number of levels such as Federal, State and District. All of these pieces of legislation have specific limits for specific types of paint.

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