SHANGHAI, Dec 29 (SMM) – China will recategorise eight types of solid waste, including scrap steel, copper, and aluminium, into restricted imports that can be used as raw materials, according to a notice by the Ministry of Ecology and Environment (MEE) on Tuesday December 25. This will take effect from July 2019.
Several government agencies made the joint announcement, in an effort to further regulate import management of solid waste and prevent pollution.
An approval by the MEE is required to import restricted solid scrap.
Customs data showed that China imported some 1.28 million mt of aluminium scrap in January-October. Total imports of aluminium scrap in 2018 is likely to reach 1.56 million mt, SMM expects. Among these, some 99% were covered in the latest adjustment.
The change also means that imports of Category Six copper will be restricted from July 2019. Category Six copper is currently in "non-limited import" category, while imports of Category Seven copper have been banned completely at the end of the year.
In 2018, total approved copper scrap imports, or Category Seven cooper, stood at 999,700 mt, down some 66.7% from volumes approved last year. A total of 3.01 million mt of copper scrap imports received approval in 11 batches in 2017.
Overall imports of copper scrap, including Category Six and approved volume for Category Seven, stood at 1.27 million mt in metal content in 2018, SMM calculated.