In January 2018, China banned shipments of plastic, unsorted scrap paper and other waste materials.
It had previously been the world’s largest importer of waste materials. This policy which was called National Sword, had a huge effect on the global recycling industry.
The government of China blamed the prevalence of contaminated or tainted imports and said it was concerned about the country’s ability to manage waste.
Other countries in began to import waste, with limited disposal facilities available.