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Solid Waste Imports Curtailed as China Prioritises Environmental Protection

The Ministry of Environmental Protection (MEP) has informed the World Trade Organisation of its intention to ban the import of 24 varieties of solid waste, including waste plastics, unsorted scrap paper, discarded textile materials and vanadium slags.  The ban will come into effect as of the end of 2017 and has been designed to protect the country’s environmental wellbeing and to boost public health.

According to a statement from the MEP, China’s central government attaches considerable importance to both protecting the environment and effectively managing solid waste imports. In particular, during the course of the April 2017 meeting that reviewed and adopted the Implementation Plan for Prohibiting the Entry of Foreign Wastes and Promoting the Reform of the Solid Waste Import Management System, particular emphasis was placed on the need to improve the country’s solid waste import management system, while drawing up a timetable for banning the import of solid wastes by trade and by category and revising the imported solid waste management portfolio. Ultimately, the aim is to greatly reduce the range and quantity of solid waste imports, while refining the procedures for recycling solid waste in line with the principles of the circular economy.

For further details (in Chinese), please refer to the following websites:

Transcript of the MEP press briefing (20 July 2017)

Central Leading Group for Deepening Overall Reform Adopts Implementation Plan for Prohibiting the Entry of Foreign Wastes and Promoting the Reform of the Solid Waste Import Management System at its 34th Meeting

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