Events News

Special rules for plastic packaging not compatible with EU law

A legal assessment shows that the special rules for plastic packaging and exemptions for other packaging materials discussed as part of the planned EU Packaging Regulation (PPWR) are very likely not compatible with EU law. 

According to the report, provisions that, for example, only prohibit plastic packaging require it to be reused or exempt coated paper packaging from the recycled content quotes, very likely violate the principle of equal treatment because there are no objective reasons for such unequal treatment. The legal experts also criticise procedural infringements because the Parliament and Council have not taken all relevant factors into account in their proposals. In a joint appeal, the associations EuPC, IK and Elipso, which commissioned the legal assessment, call on the Member States and the European Parliament to remove the material-specific special rules in the ongoing trilogue negotiations to create legal and planning certainty for companies. 

The assessment by the international law firm Dentons concludes that all the special rules for plastic packaging and exemptions for other materials analysed most likely violate the EU principle of equal treatment because, with a high probability, they discriminate against plastic packaging. Such discrimination is counterproductive to the objectives of the PPWR because it is very likely to lead to environmental problems by replacing light and easily recyclable plastic packaging with heavier and less recyclable packaging materials, causing an increase in the amount of packaging waste and greenhouse gas emissions. 

The report shows, among other things, that the bans on plastic film for a 6-pack of bottles or plastic packaging for unprocessed fruit and vegetables are not compatible with EU law. 

Plastic packaging manufacturers have long called for a return to EU-wide harmonised applied packaging rules. ​ However, the legal fragility of the text, as currently proposed, will very likely lead to an avalanche of European or national legal disputes and, as a result, to instability of the framework and the undermining of the circular economy for packaging that it aims to establish. This is why the three associations are calling on the European legislator to guarantee the legal certainty of this text. 

Source: EuPC 

Tin liên quan