EU ban on recovered paper exports to India to be corrected

Containership at the port of Genoa
26 Oct 2021 − 

It was not the intention of the Indian government to ban recovered paper imports from the EU, and updates to an EU Regulation that will result in such a ban are indeed what they initially appeared to be – an unfortunate accident.

The Indian Embassy has contacted the European Commission to confirm that a clerical error had been made in its government's response to an information request from Brussels, according to Andreas Otto, Vice-President of ERPA, the recovered paper division of the European Recycling Industries’ Confederation (EuRIC). The response was one of the elements fed into the drafting of the new EU Regulation 2021/1840 adopted last week. It updates the rules for shipments of green-listed wastes for recovery from the EU to countries which are not members of the OECD.

The EU Commission now plans to launch a "corrigendum procedure" for the Regulation once an official written request is received from India. However, this correction procedure is expected to take between six and eight weeks, Mr Otto told EUWID. This would result in a period between 10 November and mid or late December when the export ban will apply.

The Indian paper industry is dependent on imported recovered paper for raw material and was the most important destination market for EU exports in the first half of this year. Monthly EU exports to India ranged from 66,000 t in May to about 150,000 t in March. The largest volumes of recovered paper headed to that country came from Spain, Italy and the Netherlands.

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