Confusion over Indian recovered import ban from EU

JK Paper in India
An Indian Paper Recycling Mill belonging to JK Paper

India appears to have inadvertently banned import of recovered paper from the EU.

In the Official Journal of the European Union, published last week, the European Commission published a list of import regulations from third countries after it wrote to them to ask what their regulations are on export of waste.


However, India listed the Basel Convention code B3020 for recovered paper as one of its banned materials in this list.

This means that, according to this document, EU countries and Northern Ireland are unable to export paper for recycling to India. This is because this document is considered regulation under EU law, so prevents export of materials that are not accepted by the end destination.

As the UK is no longer part of the EU, this regulation does not carry over into UK law.

But there appears to be no record of this with the Indian Government, and the last time there was an update on recovered fibre imports on Indian Government documents was in 2009.

As this has been published in the Official Journal of the European Union, EU exporters will be prevented from sending material to India from there unless the European Commission regulation is amended.

It is not clear as yet whether this has been a change in Indian legislation, or is a mistake in including B3020 in the response by India.

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