KUALA LUMPUR (June 20): A blanket ban on plastic waste as called by a consumer association will hurt law-abiding plastics recyclers, as well as drive them out of business, says industry players.
The Malaysian Plastics Manufacturers Association (MPMA) and the Malaysia Plastics Recyclers Association (MPRA) also said such a move would not help the Government in combating smugglers and illegal plastic recyclers.
“As an economic activity, recycling is crucial to creating new value that benefits society and contributes to sustainability. Legal operators support Malaysia’s manufacturing and export sectors in industries such as electrical and electronics, automotive and others. A total ban would bring Malaysia’s participation in the global circular economy to a halt,” they said in a joint statement today.
They pointed out that the Malaysian Government had not allowed imports of ‘sampah plastik’ since 2008 and all law-abiding plastic recyclers had been complying with the ban.
“This means ‘sampah plastik’ from overseas was smuggled into Malaysia and illegally imported.
"We hope the continuing debate will focus on the more immediate problem of how to properly dispose of existing 'sampah plastik' and prevent future smuggling. This would be more productive than harming legitimate businesses which have not broken the law,” they said.
The association also reiterated their stand that Malaysia had no place for other countries’ rubbish.
“We continue to support and are ready to assist the Government in their efforts to crack down on these unscrupulous and illegal operators and to protect the environment," they added.