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Recyclers' concern at stricter China import regs

Plastic recyclers fear the export market could be further weakened by stricter Chinese import regulations.

China has tightened the rules in a bid to improve and standardise imports of “solid waste”. They affect the requirement for a pre-shipment inspection certificate, identification of the company sending the waste, proof of the company receiving it, port inspection, customs supervision and the import licence.

China takes 88% of UK plastic exports. Recyclers are concerned that the tighter rules will put downward pressure on prices. 

Eco Plastics head of procurement Charlie Flounders said: “In recent weeks new legislation in the Far East has left uncertainty over export. It seems this may lead to more material on the market and therefore a drop in price as supply begins to overtake demand.”

China is also a significant importer of UK paper and paper recyclers welcome the country’s bid to tackle to quality issue.

Mark Lyndon Paper Enterprises (UK) managing director Paul Briggs said: “I think it is really good that those not playing by the rules are going to be stopped and we can have a level playing field to work from if we are all legal and providing the same quality.”

  • More on this in tomorrow’s issue of MRW (Friday, 26 August)

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