Plastic Waste Management Rules 2023 Key Amendments

The Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEFCC) took a significant step on October 16, 2023, by notifying the draft Plastic Waste Management (Second Amendment) Rules, 2023. These proposed amendments aim to bring about changes in the existing Plastic Waste Management Rules, 2016. One of the noteworthy changes can be found in rule 3, which pertains to the definition of an “Importer.”

Redefining the Role of Importers

The amended sub-rule (k) now defines an “Importer” as a person engaged in the import of plastic packaging, commodities with plastic packaging, carry bags, plastic packaging, plastic sheets, or similar items, including plastic raw materials in the form of resin or pellets, with the intention of further sale.

In sub-rule (n), the draft introduces a new definition for “multi-layered packaging.” It describes multi-layered packaging as any material used for packaging, which must include at least one layer of plastic as the primary component, combined with one or more layers of materials such as paper, paperboard, polymeric materials, or aluminum foil. These layers can be arranged as a laminate or co-extruded structure.

Additionally, sub-rule (a) revises the definition of “Plastic Packaging.” It now encompasses packaging materials created using plastics for the purpose of safeguarding, preserving, storing, and transporting various products in a range of applications.

Importantly, the draft notification provides an opportunity for any concerned party to voice their objections or suggestions regarding these proposed amendments. They can do so by submitting their feedback in writing within a sixty-day period.

These changes represent a step forward in addressing plastic waste management and environmental concerns, aligning the regulations with evolving industry practices and materials used in packaging.

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