KUALA LUMPUR (Oct 16): The government has frozen issuance of licences to establish plastic waste recycling factories in Malaysia and banned the import of these materials to ensure existing illegal factories do not continue their operations.
Energy, Technology, Science, Climate Change and Environment Minister, Yeo Bee Yin, told Parliament today that the government has established a joint ministerial committee to tackle the presence of plastic waste in the country.
Yeo said the committee comprises the Housing and Local Government; as well as these other ministries: Water, Land and Natural Resources; International Trade and Industry; and Energy, Technology, Science, Climate Change and Environment.
"Since China bannned the import of plastic waste, developed countries have diverted their waste export destination to Southeast Asia, including Malaysia, and the situation is getting worse, especially with more and more illegal plastic recycling factories.
"The (Malaysian) government has conducted raids on these factories, particularly at the Kuala Langat area, and has closed more than 30 factories there. Since this issue was brought to the notice of the new government, import of plastic waste has been freezed. Enforcement and monitoring operations will be continued to ensure illegal factories do not continue their operations," she said.