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'No deal' EU withdrawal threat to UK waste exports

The UK will become a ‘third country’ beyond the scope of EU waste legislation if it leaves without a Brexit deal, the European Commission has warned.

It said in a ‘notice to stakeholders’ aimed at businesses, that without an agreement all exports of waste for disposal and the export of mixed municipal waste for recovery from the EU-27 to the United Kingdom will be prohibited unless the latter were a member of the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) and a party to the Basel Convention.

If though a deal is struck then the provisions in the note would be likely to change accordingly.

As it stands, imports of waste into the EU-27 from the UK would be treated as though from a non-member state governed by the Basel Convention.

The EU said it and the UK were seeking agreement on how to deal with goods whose movements have started before and end after the transition period.

Shipments would be allowed but subject to new conditions including that the UK authorities “send a stamped copy of their decisions to consent to the relevant customs offices”, which would then “send where applicable a stamped copy of the movement document to the competent authority of dispatch, transit and destination in the union stating that the waste has either left or entered the union”.

WEEE, batteries, municipal waste, packaging and packaging waste and end-of-life vehicles exported to the UK from the EU could still be counted towards the achievement of EU targets so long as UK firms can provide “sound evidence showing compliance “, with relevant EU rules.

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