Thousands of recycling units in India are currently importing raw materials and processing them to produce finished products for their applications in the housing and construction sectors except other cost sensitive industries. These blends are officially approved by government authorities. Finished products made from mixed raw materials or locally produced waste are similar to imported products of a similar type. This means that there is a limited compromise on the quality of the finished products, even if they are made from mixed raw materials.
The Department of Commerce under the Ministry of Commerce and Industry has recommended the Department of Chemicals and Petrochemicals for wider consultation with stakeholders before the implementation of mandatory quality standards, scheduled for October 15, 2021. The parties Industry stakeholders, however, have called for a postponement in the proposal to implement BIS quality standards on raw materials for one year, if not fully withdrawn. A final decision, however, has yet to come from the BIS.
â€œThe government should first introduce BIS quality standards on finished products. Once the industry stabilizes with quality standards on finished products, BIS should think about its extension to raw materials, only after broader consultations with industry stakeholders, â€said Sanjay Mehta, president of the Material Recycling Association of India (MRAI), at Polymerupdate.
MRAI earlier this week hosted a two-day Recycling Business Summit 2021 event in Goa, possibly the first physically attended seminar on the topic in India since the outbreak of the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic reported in the country in February 2020.
It should be mentioned here that on April 12, 2021, BIS issued a notification in which value chain actors, including manufacturers, suppliers and processors were given six months to adhere to the quality standards. of BIS on polymers.
Mehta urged recyclers to come together and voice their concerns to the respective designated authorities until they are heard.
â€œThe BIS regulation on the quality of raw materials (i.e. polymers) is only the result of twist-of-arms tactics applied by primary producers because they (primary producers) want the government to impose complete restrictions on the import of scrap metal. With this, the demand for virgin materials will increase, which will ultimately support their sales and profits. With the aim of preventing such an intention, the MRAI is carrying out a series of discussions with the authorities concerned to paint a clearer picture, â€Mehta said.
Speaking at the inaugural session of Asia’s largest Recycling Business Summit 2021 in Goa, Sudhir Kumar, Advisor, NITI Aayog, assured that BIS standards would not be unfair to industry players and urged recyclers not to hesitate to develop them.
Dhawal Shah, director of Metco India, told Polymerupdate: â€œEnvironmental concerns also apply to primary producers who import coal to generate electricity. But the recycling industry saves natural resources and energy to make finished products competitive.
Meanwhile, recycling is not an option but a necessity as the materials used must be collected, supplied and processed to support the circular economy, preserve natural resources for future generations and produce end products at competitive prices. .
Mohan Agarwal, managing director of Century Metal Recycling Ltd, told Polymerupdate: â€œThe government should not stop the influx of raw materials by restricting the import of scrap metal. The reduction in scrap imports will create challenges for secondary manufacturers who turn the wheels of the circular economy in accordance with the Paris Pact. “
DILIP KUMAR JHA