The recycled commodities market industry experienced a major disruption on January 1, when China’s new “National Sword” policy went into effect, officially banning the import of 24 types of solid waste including unsorted paper, various plastics, and some trace metals. The policy also changed the allowed contamination rate for recyclables to just 0.5%. For years, most Western nations had been sending their unwanted scrap metals, plastic and paper to China for re-use. China quickly became, by far, the biggest importer and recycler of such materials to the extent that more than half the world’s exports ended up there, including 55% of all scrap paper. Prior to the ban, China was taking in over 7 million tons of scrap plastic each year from Europe, the US and other parts of Asia . . .

To read more, sign up for aFree 30-Day Trial   of MRP's research, orLog In