China implements complete ban on import of solid waste from 1 January 2021

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Members are referred to the UK Club’s Circular 10/20, “New revised People's Republic of China (PRC) law on the prevention and control of environmental pollution by solid wastes (“the law”) – Effective 1st September 2020”. The Club’s correspondents, Oasis P&I Services Company Limited, have provided an update on this law.

On 24 November, 2020, the Chinese Government issued Announcement No. 53 which confirms that the import of solid waste into China will be completely banned from 1 January, 2021.  

“Solid waste” refers to “solid, semi-solid and gaseous articles and substances placed in containers that have lost their original usage value or have not lost their usage value but have been abandoned, as well as articles and substances included in the management of solid waste according to laws and administrative regulations, but it excludes the waste which is not harmful to public health and ecological safety after harmless processing, and meets the mandatory national product quality standards, or is not identified as solid waste according to the solid waste identification standards and procedures.”

According to local Customs, garbage or solid waste generated during the ship's normal operation is not regarded as imported waste, and so these regulations will not affect the disposal of ship’s garbage and solid sludge (operational waste) to contractors in Chinese ports.

A violation of the law shall result in a fine of between CNY 500,000 to CNY 5,000,000. The carrier and the importer shall be jointly and severally liable for the return and disposal of the solid waste. For additional details, please refer to Oasis’ Circular No. 2014 which may be downloaded below.


Jacqueline Tan

Legal Services Manager