Recycled plastic export report: January 2021

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Please note this report just focuses on the waste polymers of ethylene commodity code (391510), as exports of other plastics are relatively small in volume

The effective ban on exporting to non-OECD countries had a big effect on the January recycled plastic export data.

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With the temporary ban in place until Defra gets permission to allow exports of plastics to resume to non-OECD countries, this hit exports to Malaysia hard in particular down to just 399 tonnes compared to 5,078 in December.

Turkey also introduced tougher import restrictions at the start of January, and that also reduced export figures there.

However, with Turkey taking 9,784 tonnes in January (down from 12,239 tonnes in December), it still made up almost all exports to non-EU countries.

Exports to the EU totalled 6,558 tonnes, lower than December’s 9,309 tonnes. The Netherlands took 2,752 tonnes of this up from 1,823 tonnes in December. There have been reports that recycled plastic-filled containers were being permitted to leave Rotterdam for Asia, which could account for some of this rise.

Spain saw an increase to 1,849 tonnes from 529 tonnes in December.

Otherwise, there were no other significant destinations for PE-based plastics in January.

PE key destinations (391510)

wdt_ID Date China Malaysia Vietnam EU total
1 01/12/2017 1,593,325 8,154,599 5,185,643 2,356,480
2 01/11/2017 1,340,655 11,929,056 8,441,914 5,064,111
3 01/10/2017 3,937,218 8,448,893 9,224,031 6,378,656
4 01/09/2017 6,735,842 8,836,402 6,965,057 6,021,468
5 01/08/2017 12,986,863 8,042,469 4,297,452 6,436,902
6 01/07/2017 14,879,464 6,984,245 2,828,813 1,917,806
7 01/06/2017 13,836,510 5,912,876 3,276,369 6,344,826
8 01/05/2017 10,244,233 6,634,566 2,371,000 5,126,138
9 01/04/2017 16,314,413 5,812,466 1,722,387 3,563,463
10 01/03/2017 20,367,409 2,720,115 1,448,964 4,328,398

Full historic export data

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