India bans import of solid plastic waste

Indian government amends hazardous and other wastes rules 2016

Tweets from the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change on the ban of plastic scrap imports.

Taking into consideration the grave environmental issues created by the use of plastics made from imported plastic scrap, the Indian government has put a complete ban on the import of solid plastic waste. According to an official data, India produces about 25,940 tons of waste from plastics every day.

Tamil Nadu banned the use of single-use disposable plastic items in January 2019. The ban in the state is part of an ambitious national campaign to get rid of plastic waste. While hosting the United Nations’ World Environment Day in June 2018, Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced the central government’s intention to eliminate single-use plastic by 2022.

The Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEFCC) in a media release stated, ‘In order to strengthen the implementation of environmentally sound management of hazardous waste in the country, the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change has amended the Hazardous and Other Wastes (Management & Transboundary Movement) Rules, 2016. The amendment has been done keeping into consideration the “Ease of Doing Business” and boosting “Make in India” initiative by simplifying the procedures under the Rules, while at the same time upholding the principles of sustainable development and ensuring minimal impact on the environment.’

Among other regulations, the MoEFCC order has specifically mentioned, ‘Solid plastic waste has been prohibited from import into the country including in Special Economic Zones (SEZ) and by Export Oriented Units (EOU).’

It is noteworthy that in 2009 Himachal Pradesh became the first Indian state to ban plastic shopping bags. Delhi, the national capital of India, followed suit in 2017 by banning plastic bags, cups and plates, and single-use cutlery.

India’s 29 states and 7 union territories in some form had been trying to discourage the people from using single-use plastic items. Despite all government initiatives,we are yet to see any significant result. The most common form of restrictions implemented by the governments had been the ban of thin plastic shopping bags. Currently, state governments are working to reduce the manufacturing of plastic by shutting down factories and preventing import of plastic products.

India being the lowest consumer of plastic recycles only about 4 million tons. To incentivize domestic plastic recycling units, the government had banned the import of plastic waste, particularly PET bottles, in 2015. In 2016, an amendment allowed such imports as long as they were carried out by agencies situated in SEZs.

The latest move came in the wake of substantial increase in imports of solid plastic scraps. Experts believe that the lack of a proper segregation system and waste collection is the main reason behind challenges posed by the plastic industry.

The impact, resilience, and growth of responsible packaging in a wide region are daily chronicled by Packaging South Asia.

A multi-channel B2B publication and digital platform such as Packaging South always aware of the prospect of new beginnings and renewal. Its 16-year-old print monthly, based in New Delhi, India has demonstrated its commitment to progress and growth. The Indian and Asian packaging industries have shown resilience in the face of ongoing challenges over the past three years.

As we present our publishing plan for 2023, India’s real GDP growth for the financial year ending 31 March 2023 will reach 6.3%. Packaging industry growth has exceeded GDP growth even when allowing for inflation in the past three years.

The capacity for flexible film manufacturing in India increased by 33% over the past three years. With orders in place, we expect another 33% capacity addition from 2023 to 2025. Capacities in monocartons, corrugation, aseptic liquid packaging, and labels have grown similarly. The numbers are positive for most of the economies in the region – our platform increasingly reaches and influences these.

Even given the disruptions of supply chains, raw material prices, and the challenge of responsible and sustainable packaging, packaging in all its creative forms and purposes has significant headroom to grow in India and Asia. Our context and coverage engulf the entire packaging supply chain – from concept to shelf and further – to waste collection and recycling. We target brand owners, product managers, raw material suppliers, packaging designers and converters, and recyclers.

In an admittedly fragmented and textured terrain, this is the right time to plan your participation and marketing support communication – in our impactful and highly targeted business platform. Tell us what you need. Speak and write to our editorial and advertising teams! For advertisement , for editorial and for subscriptions

– Naresh Khanna

Subscribe Now


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here