India – India is not equipped to take up the displaced tonnages of plastics scrap if, in the worst-case scenario, China’s National Sword initiative leads to an import ban, insisted BIR plastics committee chairman Surendra Patawari Borad of Belgium-based Gemini Corporation at the body’s latest meeting in Hong Kong.
India’s plastic scrap imports amount to ‘less than 5%’ of those of China and import licences are restricted to only around 30 companies. ‘Though the country is growing very well,’ he said, ‘I do not expect an increase in the plastics scrap trade into India.’
‘Panic’ over customs clearance issues and a possible ban in China have persuaded many US exporters to stay ‘out of the scene’, he continued.
US prices of certain lower grades of plastic scrap have duly slumped ‘more than 50%, and in some cases to near-zero levels’. There has been a ‘bloodbath’ too among the higher grades, with values having slid 15-20% in two months.
In the European report to the BIR plastics committee from Veolia PropretÃ© France Recycling’s Renaud Pfund, he suggested Chinese regulatory developments would potentially restructure the market.
For the Middle East, Mahmoud Al Sharif of the Sharif Group of Companies noted that only 10-20% of used plastics are entering the recycling loop in the United Arab Emirates but that recycling awareness in the Middle East is being boosted by government-led campaigns.