“National Sword”: China Cracks Down on Scrap Plastic Imports

China is continuing their crackdown on foreign waste with a newly announced campaign known as “National Sword 2017”, targeting plastics, industrial waste, electronics, and other household waste materials. The primary named goal is to monitor organized crime such as the smuggling of guns and illegal drugs. The new campaign was launched during a meeting in Beijing on February 7th.

Another campaign launched four years earlier, called Green Fence, targeted low quality bale being shipped to China. U.S exports to china decreased during Green Fence, but it created an opportunity to drive improvements in bail quality.

Here are some of the main goals of China’s import crackdown:

  • Smuggling
  • Illicit activities involving recyclable and waste materials
  • Protect public health and environment by intercepting foreign waste at ports of entry
  • Heighten supervision of parts
  • Spread awareness about corruption
  • Increase penalties for smugglers

By cracking down on the importation of foreign waste, China hopes to provide a cleaner and safer environment to its citizens. You can click here to read the full write-up from Plastics Recycling Update.

UPDATE 01 March 2017: The crackdown on imported plastic has lead to the confiscation of more than 22,000 tons of material since February 7. Read more here.

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