Use of plastics should be managed, not banned say associations

KUALA LUMPUR (May 6): Malaysia should focus on the sustainable management of plastics instead of completely banning their production and use, said Malaysian Plastics Manufacturers Association (MPMA) and Malaysian Plastics Recyclers Association (MPRA) in a statement yesterday.

They said “it is unsustainable to eliminate all types of plastics from daily life” and that a “blanket ban is not viable”.

MPMA and MPRA said the way forward is to develop a circular economy which reuses instead of discards materials, and believes it can be done through the development of a comprehensive waste management system locally and globally.

“With better waste management solutions and policies, plastics will be captured for recycling or properly disposed of, and not end up in the environment,” they said.

Plastics are widely used in many sectors like automotive, electrical and electronics, construction, medical and packaging, they said, with the application of alternative materials limited to a few niche products.

MPMA and MPRA are firmly committed to the principle that plastics do not belong in the environment and should be used responsibly, reused and recycled.

Without the recycling sector, Malaysia would not be able to develop into a sustainable economy and create new value that benefits society and the environment, they said.

They said that licensed recyclers must comply with 18 stringent rules and regulations, and that factories are closely monitored and require approval from various agencies like the Department of Environment (JAS) and National Solid Waste Management Department (JPSPN).

They said licensed recyclers do not import or use “sampah plastik”, and that only clean and homogeneous recyclable materials in line with the Basel Convention — like industrial scrap from the manufacture of car bumpers — are imported

These materials are then turned into recycled plastics pellets that can be used for the manufacture of other products, they said.

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