China’s Waste Ban Hits Asian Ports

0 comments

China’s Waste Ban Hits Asian Ports

 

FILE PHOTO: Containers are seen at the Yangshan Deep Water Port in Shanghai, China April 24, 2018. REUTERS/Aly Song/File Photo

By Sam Whelan, Asia correspondent (The Loadstar) – Port operations in South-east Asia have come under increasing pressure from a build-up in scrap cargo, following China’s crackdown on imported waste.

In Vietnam, a dramatic increase in scrap-laden containers forced Ho Chi Minh City’s overloaded Cat Lai port to temporarily stop receiving plastic and paper waste on 1 June.

In a letter to customers, terminal operator Saigon Newport said handling operations had been “seriously impacted” by 8,000 teu of uncollected scrap cargo, resulting in temporary overcapacity. The terminal had previously restricted imports for a month in a bid to clear the backlog, but to no avail.

The problem appears to be a lack of valid import permits for the cargo, with the customs department clamping down on an increasing number of import violations this year, according to local media.

One local forwarder told The Loadstar the containers were being “re-routed via Vietnam and then smuggled via road into China”.

He claimed: “This has caused a big problem as not all containers could be transferred to China. Some traders are waiting to shift the containers to other countries. For example, Chinese companies have opened or are building factories in other ASEAN countries, like Malaysia.”

Roy Chau, general manager CH Robinson Vietnam, said the scrap shipments were exacerbating existing port congestion at Cat Lai, one of Vietnam’s busiest container gateways.

“In fact, plastic waste is not the main issue affecting forwarding operations, as port congestion at Cat Lai happened for years due terminal infrastructure, traffic in the surrounding area, vessel delays and cargo weight limit for trucking,” he said.

Glenn Kong, general director at nearby Vietnam International Container Terminals (VICT), said VICT had been unaffected since it had implemented policies to limit the dwell time of scrap containers.

He added: “The recent Chinese ban on plastic imports continues its impact around the world. Scrap is being diverted to other markets, particularly to many South-east Asian countries such as Malaysia and Vietnam. However, tonnes of plastic waste will end up in landfill, due to an absence of anywhere else to send it.”

See Also: China Says Its Done Taking Our Garbage

Until this year, China was by far the biggest recipient of scrap, importing around half of the world’s plastic waste. However, a ban on plastic and a variety of other waste materials, announced last July, came into force in January and was expanded in April. This left US and European exporters in particular scrambling to find new markets.

US Census Bureau figures show recovered plastic exports to Vietnam in the first quarter were almost double that of the same period last year. And in Thailand, an increase in scrap cargo arriving at Laem Chabang has put pressure on authorities to ramp-up inspections. According to the Bangkok Post, local police discovered 58 tonnes of illegal plastic from 35 countries.

A Laem Chabang-based port executive claimed there had been no impact from increased scrap cargo on terminal operations so far, but Thai customs were stepping up inspections.

“My guess is that customs around the region may be doing the same thing, as this is unlikely to be a problem confined to Thailand,” he added.

Shipping lines are also feeling the effects of China’s change in policy. In its first-quarter report, Maersk Line highlighted the ban as one reason Asian exports from the US and Europe had declined significantly. And in an update sent to The Loadstar, the carrier said: “We do see decreases on volumes of waste imports into China.

“However, waste volumes to South-east Asia increased. Finished paper from South-east Asia to China also increased as a sign of change in supply chains.”

The Loadstar is fast becoming known at the highest levels of logistics and supply chain management as one of the best sources of influential analysis and commentary.

Check them out at TheLoadstar.co.uk, or find them on Facebook and Twitter.

Leave a Reply

SSCP   CAS-002   9L0-066   350-050   642-999   220-801   74-678   642-732   400-051   ICGB   c2010-652   70-413   101-400   220-902   350-080   210-260   70-246   1Z0-144   3002   AWS-SYSOPS   70-347   PEGACPBA71V1   220-901   70-534   LX0-104   070-461   HP0-S42   1Z0-061   000-105   70-486   70-177   N10-006   500-260   640-692   70-980   CISM   VCP550   70-532   200-101   000-080   PR000041   2V0-621   70-411   352-001   70-480   70-461   ICBB   000-089   70-410   350-029   1Z0-060   2V0-620   210-065   70-463   70-483   CRISC   MB6-703   1z0-808   220-802   ITILFND   1Z0-804   LX0-103   MB2-704   210-060   101   200-310   640-911   200-120   EX300   300-209   1Z0-803   350-001   400-201   9L0-012   70-488   JN0-102   640-916   70-270   100-101   MB5-705   JK0-022   350-060   300-320   1z0-434   350-018   400-101   350-030   000-106   ADM-201   300-135   300-208   EX200   PMP   NSE4   1Z0-051   c2010-657   C_TFIN52_66   300-115   70-417   9A0-385   70-243   300-075   70-487   NS0-157   MB2-707   70-533   CAP   OG0-093   M70-101   300-070   102-400   JN0-360   SY0-401   000-017   300-206   CCA-500   70-412   2V0-621D   70-178   810-403   70-462   OG0-091   1V0-601   200-355   000-104   700-501   70-346   CISSP   300-101   1Y0-201   200-125  , 200-125  , 100-105  , 100-105  , CISM   NS0-157   350-018  , NS0-157   ICBB  , N10-006 test  , 350-050   70-534   70-178   220-802   102-400   000-106   70-411  , 400-101   100-101  , NS0-157   1Z0-803   200-125  , 210-060   400-201   350-050   C_TFIN52_66  , JN0-102  , 200-355   JN0-360   70-411   350-018  , 70-412   350-030   640-916   000-105   100-105  , 70-270  , 70-462   300-070  , 300-070   642-999   101-400   PR000041   200-101  , 350-030   300-070  , 70-270  , 400-051   200-120   70-178   9L0-012   70-487   LX0-103   100-105  ,