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EU-Funded Study Finds High Levels of Lead in Paint in Seven Asian Countries

March 21, 2014

The majority of household paints analyzed in seven Asian countries contain unsafe levels of lead; would not meet regulatory standards established in most highly industrialized countries; and, in a number of cases, have astonishingly high lead content, according to a new report. The Asian Regional Paint Report that will be released on March 23, 2014 by IPEN at the 4th Asian-Pacific Regional meeting of the Strategic Approach to International Chemicals Management (SAICM) convened by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). For a copy of the report and news release, please go to  (first item)

Key findings:

More than three-quarters of the paints analyzed contained lead levels above 90 parts per million (ppm) and would not be permitted for sale in most industrialized countries.
At least a quarter of all paints from all countries contained extremely dangerous levels of lead above 10,000 ppm.
Overall, brightly colored paints (red, yellow) contained the highest lead levels.
Major paint brands that contained high levels of lead in previously conducted studies in these same countries now have levels below 90 ppm.
Paints with low levels of lead were available in all markets at prices comparable to the leaded products, suggesting that the technology exists to produce cost effective, lead-safe products.
None of the paint cans containing lead stated this on the label or explained the hazards associated with lead.