China Market update (11/14/2017)

China Recycling Market update (11/14/2017)

According to a news release titled “Blue Sky”, from the General Administration of Customs (GAC) dated 2017-11-07,  a crackdown action against solid waste smuggling was orchestrated by GAC’s Head Office and carried out by customs at six locations including Tianjin, Dalian, Tsingdao, Shanghai, Shenzhen and Shantou with the support of the police force.

Within two hours on 2017-11-07, the joint actions seized 39 suspects on accounts of illegal smuggling, with key violators included from 12 different gang groups. The initial findings confirmed smuggling plastic waste, slags amounting to 33,000 tons, and relevant documentary evidence.

The initial investigation also confirmed that, tempted by illegal interest, the gang groups smuggled plastic waste with third party permits. The plastic waste is then sold to unqualified small factories and workshops for processing while the slags, which are the prohibited items, were imported by false declaration. As these are highly polluting items, customs will certainly take action according to the rules.

Apart from plastic waste, the waste items seized, notably the slags, were derived from the refinery process with hazardous substance in excess of the state control limits. The second-processing of such slags would cause pollution to air, water, and soil. The investigation also uncovered the illegal use of third party import permits leading to transfers of plastic waste to small workshops and wholesale marts. The excess of the plastic waste are posting threats to the local environment as they are without proper treatment according to rules.

After three rounds of “Blue Sky” crackdown actions with the joint efforts of four departments – customs, EPD, police and AQSIQ, the GAC cracked down vigorously on solid waste smuggling with the objective of protecting the environment and the peoples health. So far this year, the customs has set up 200 prosecution cases, arrested 259 criminal suspects, and seized 303,000 tons of solid waste including plastics waste, waste textiles, and slags, etc. The recent action focus is on smuggling of high contaminant plastic waste and illegal use of import permits.

The GAC will continue to exercise unrelenting action according to rules and environment protection systems going forward.

By Dr. Steve Wong
Executive President, CSPA
Chairman, Fukutomi Company Limited
Committee Member, Plastics Committee of BIR
Committee Member, WEEE Committee of BIR

14 November 2017

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