New Campaign Against Trash Smuggling Launched

(photo: Pixabay)
By Mei ManuelMay 27th, 2018

On Tuesday, May 22, the Chinese government announced a new campaign to combat trash being smuggled from overseas as part of its current move to strengthen its "war on pollution" and reduce the foreign garbage in the country.

In its Weibo social media page, the Chinese customs administration announced the campaign but did not provide new details about it other than to say it will be a huge campaign.

The effort comes at the same time that the Chinese government is increasing its actions against illegal trash imports as part of its national campaign to clean up the Chinese environment and increase the economy's global value.

Last year, the Chinese government said to the World Trade Organization that it would stop accepting imports of 24 types of foreign wastes by the end of the year and it would also phase out shipments for other waste products by the end of 2019. The announcement was met with concerns, especially from the global recycling industry, and the domestic recyclers had to work with the raw material shortages caused by the move.

According to the General Administration of Customs in April, it was able to seize at least 110,000 tones of smuggled solid waste this year and 52 people were arrested related to it. Last year, they arrested 259 people for smuggling foreign wastes. Criminal gangs were also implicated by taking containers of electronic wastes from Hong Kong to North Korea and then smuggling back to the mainland to bypass restrictions.

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