Recently, rumours about a possible Chinese ban on imports of mixed paper created uncertainty on the European recovered paper markets. Now, China has made an official statement and things have become clearer.
China has notified the World Trade Organisation that it will ban the import of a total of 24 kinds of solid wastes. These will include unsorted waste paper, household plastics, numerous textiles and certain metallic slags and residues. The ban is to become effective by the end of this year at the latest.
Talking to The Recycling Association, Colin Clarke, managing director of Mark Lyndon, emphasised that mixed paper, OCC and other grades could still be exported for the time being as it was only unsorted waste paper imports that had been banned. "The word from China is that we purchase a grade made to a global specification and not unsorted papers", he said.