"Not only our producers but also importers at the receiving ports are subjected to Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) requirements and as a result, our exports have become more challenging. But we are not going to stay passive or even quiet," the ministry quotes Rishad Bathiudeen, Minister of Industry and Commerce, as having told a recent forum.
"We have been seeing more and more innovative packaging solutions that can be re-used for other purposes but post-consumer packaging is a big challenge we are faced with both in our domestic market as well as export markets. That is the issue of garbage creation due to the packaging material. Therefore, improvements are needed in this regard. More importantly international packaging requirements are impacting on our exports. Though high quality exports packaging is important for competitive international markets, many Lankan export items with cover packaging and non-recyclable packaging are now faced with increasing challenges abroad. This is due to the emerging concept of Extended Producer Responsibility adopted by many developed countries," the minister said.
"Since not only producers but also importers at the receiving ports are subjected to these EPR requirements, our exports have become more challenging. However we are not going to stay passive or quiet," said Bathiudeen and added: "The National Cleaner Production Centre working for my Ministry, is starting a two year programme called "Extended Producer Responsibility" with our private sector and exporters at a cost of US$ 10,000 to educate them on this international requirement. NCPC is also assisting us on a programme called ‘Recovering Resources through Recycling’ working with the private sector, which has an overall value of $ 80000 project which involves both ‘bulk’ as well as ‘retail’ packaging segments."