During a meeting held in Düsseldorf at the K trade show, the three Presidents of the European plastics industry associations, Renato Zelcher (European Plastics Converters), Javier Constante (PlasticsEurope) and Ton Emans (Plastic Recyclers Europe), agreed to oppose the Italian Government’s tax proposal of 1000 € per ton of plastic packaging.
The proposed ‘Plastics Packaging Tax’ is likely to have a negative impact on the local market, in terms of job losses and consumers being negatively affected by such a regressive tax. Italy is the second biggest producer of plastics products after Germany and the tax would put in jeopardy the economic situation of 50.000 workers and the survival of 2.000 SMEs in the value chain, according to the Italian Federation of Workers (Filctem Cgil). This will have a domino effect on the whole economy. The National Federation of Consumers (Federconsumatori) estimates that such a tax would mean an increase of households spending of 140 euro per year.
Renato Zelcher, who is also the CEO of an Italian flexible packaging company, added that this measure undermines the survival of a sector of excellence, penalizing the products and not the behaviours and will, in fact, slow down all the efforts that were done in terms of circularity.
Plastics materials and plastic products are key to avoid food waste, to reduce transport costs, to save energy and to decrease CO2 emissions. Alternative materials, very often, have a worse environmental impact as they are heavier and bulkier when compared to plastics .
The goal of 10 million tons of recycled plastic to be placed on the EU market has been pledged under the patronage of the European Commission. It is a very ambitious but attainable target that will require many investments in the whole value chain of plastics and it is not with the plastic ban or taxes that this process can be accelerated. On the contrary, it will weigh heavily on our industry, putting thousands of jobs at risk at a time when we already face economic recess in Europe. Our industry is already active in doing its part and we restate our intention to work across value chains to reach the ambitious aim that by 2025, 10 million tonnes of recycled plastics will find their way into new products on the EU market.
About EuPC: European Plastics Converters (EuPC) is the leading EU-level trade association, based in Brussels, representing European plastics converting companies. Plastics converters use plastics raw materials and recycled polymers to manufacture new products. EuPC totals about 45 national as well as European plastics converting industry associations and represents more than 50,000 companies, producing over 50 million tons of plastic products every year. More than 1.6 million people are working in EU converting companies (mainly SMEs) to create a turnover in excess of € 260 billion per year. More info: email@example.com | www.plasticsconverters.eu
About PlasticsEurope: PlasticsEurope is one of the leading European trade associations with centres in Brussels, Frankfurt, London, Madrid, Milan and Paris. We are networking with European and national plastics associations and have more than 100 member companies, producing over 90% of all polymers across the EU28 member states plus Norway, Switzerland and Turkey. More info: firstname.lastname@example.org | www.plasticseurope.org
About PRE: Plastics Recyclers Europe (PRE) is an organization representing the voice of the European plastics recyclers who reprocess plastic waste into high-quality material destined for the production of new articles. Recyclers are important facilitators of the circularity of plastics and the transition towards the circular economy. Plastics recycling in Europe is a rapidly growing sector representing €3bn in turnover, 6.6 mt of installed recycling capacity, 500 companies and 18.000 employees. More info: email@example.com | www.plasticsrecyclers.eu