China announces import ban on 32 types of solid waste

BEIJING, April 19 (Xinhua) -- China's Ministry of Ecology and Environment (MEE) announced Thursday that China will ban imports of 32 types of solid waste in its latest move to reduce environmental pollution.

Sixteen types of solid waste, including compressed car scraps and scrapped ships, will be banned from import beginning from Dec. 31, 2018, MEE said in an online announcement.

Another sixteen types, including stainless steel scraps, will be banned beginning from Dec. 31, 2019.

China began importing solid waste as a source of raw materials in the 1980s, and has for years been the world's largest importer of recyclable materials.

Solid waste often contains harmful elements if not properly disposed of. China has decided to phase out imports of solid waste that can be replaced by domestic resources before the end of 2019.