On November 14, 2022, Resolution 503/2022 of the Ministry of Environment and Sustainable Development (hereinafter, “Resolution 503” and “the Ministry“, respectively) was published. This Resolution established the guidelines and minimum contents of the plans for the reconversion of the productive processes that use mercury.

I.- Legal Background

Prior to the entry into force of the Resolution, the regulation in Argentina was governed by: (i) the Minamata Convention on Mercury (the “Convention“) and (ii) Resolution No. 299/2021.

The Convention regulates the use of mercury in production processes and the manufacture of mercury-added products and its exceptions and exemptions. In terms of exemptions, Argentina has two registered exemptions, for the production process of chlor-alkali and the manufacture of mercury thermometers.

Resolution No. 299/2021 established the guidelines for the management of elemental mercury, and its mixtures and compounds, as well as mercury-added products. This resolution established the procedure for requesting exemptions for the production process of chlor-alkali or the manufacture of mercury thermometers exclusively. It also established the need to submit a productive process reconversion plan as one of the requirements to obtain the exemption.

II.- Resolution No. 503/2022


The Resolution seeks to establish the guidelines for the reconversion plans and to comply with the environmentally rational management of mercury, under the obligations arising from the Convention. Accordingly, it defines the ” Reconversion Plan” as the schedule of activities to be carried out in an industrial establishment that uses mercury in its production or manufacturing process, aimed at the replacement and implementation of mercury-free technology.

For the drafting and filing of the Reconversion Plan, the following information must be included, at least:

  • (a) Location of the facility.
  • (b) Identification of the personnel involved and responsible for the conversion tasks.
  • (c) Technical report and description of the technology currently used.
  • (d) Technical report and description of the technology to be used for the reconversion.
  • (e) Description of waste management, including storage, transportation, final disposal, treatment, labeling, and disposal.
  • (f) Evaluation of environmental, social, and economic impacts.
  • (g) Work schedule with a framework of all the stages of the proposed reclamation and the monitoring for its compliance, including the safety measures and contingency plans for the execution of the activities.

Enforcement Authority:

The Enforcement Authority of the Resolution is the Secretariat of Environmental Control and Monitoring of the Ministry of Environment and Sustainable Development. As enforcement authority, it may carry out inspections of industrial establishments and request the information and documentation it deems necessary to ensure compliance with the Resolution.

The National Directorate of Hazardous Substances and Waste is the competent authority to evaluate, approve and monitor compliance with the plans for the reconversion of production processes that use mercury.


The Reconversion Plan must be submitted to the National Directorate of Hazardous Substances and Waste for approval. The Reconversion Plan will be approved together with the requested exemption according to Resolution MAyDS No. 299/21. Upon approval of the Reconversion Plan, a Certificate of Compliance of the Reconversion Plan under the Minamata Convention on Mercury will be issued, in accordance with the Resolution’s Sec. 4.

The Resolution establishes as a prior condition for the approval of the Reclamation Plan that: (i) the Annual Environmental Certificate must be in force and (ii) the provisions of Law No. 24,051 and its Regulatory Decree 831 of April 23, 1993, and complementary regulations must be complied with.


In case of non-compliance with the obligations assumed in the Reconversion Plan, and once the term of the notice of compliance has expired, the approval of the reconversion plan will automatically expire thus generating the loss of the exemption regime and all the benefits obtained by the owner of the establishment due to its compliance with this regime.

The Resolution became effective as from 11/14/2022.


For further information or questions on these issues, please contact Dolores Reyes, Pablo Arrascaeta, and/or Marcos Moreno Hueyo.