Scrap dealers have underlined the “real survival threat” they face from the forthcoming cash ban.
British Metals Recycling Association director-general Ian Hetherington said the trade body’s smallest members were at risk of closure from the legislation.
The Government has said that amendments to the Legal Aid Bill to outlaw cash payment for scrap metal and increase fines for trading stolen metal could be in force this autumn.
Hetherington warned that the legislation would drive people wanting to sell metal to those offering cash payment by exploiting loopholes or flouting the law.
“The resulting closure of these compliant businesses will lead to significant job losses and a drop in recycling rates which goes completely against the Government’s green agenda,” he added.
Hetherington reiterated that the cash ban must be backed up by a broad reform of the Scrap Metal Dealers Act (1964).
MRW revealed earlier this month that ministers and Home Office officials had begun drafting laws to do just this.
It is understood the legislation could be published in late May, replacing the SMDA by the end of the year.