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China increases campaign against illegal waste imports

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China has expanded its campaign against the import of waste materials, arresting 39 suspects and seizing 33,000 tonnes of plastic and mineral waste during the latest action, the customs service said on Tuesday.

Early this year, China launched the campaign against harmful “foreign garbage” imports as part of Beijing’s efforts to improve environmental conditions.

Customs said that after three rounds of “concentrated crackdown” on illegal import of waste, it has arrested 259 suspects for importing 303,000 tonnes of unlawful waste materials.

Suspects have smuggled waste plastics and minerals and sold them to unqualified domestic plants.
China is a major importer of waste, and some imports remain legal. Last year, China imported 7.3 million tonnes of waste plastics, valued at $3.7 billion, accounting for 56 percent of world imports.