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Germany orders drinks recycling settlement

GERMANY: June 13, 2003.

BERLIN - German Environment Minister Juergen Trittin said the drinks industry had until the end of the week to agree a settlement after it pulled out of a deal last week to launch a new recycling system by October.

He said that if no agreement was reached, the industry would be ordered to implement the new system in full immediately. The industry last week suspended an agreement to launch a new national recycling system for non-refillable bottles and cans by October, saying it could no longer be sure of its legal position following recent comments from the European Commission.

The government introduced deposit charges on bottles and cans of beer, mineral water and soft drinks at the start of the year. Charges already existed for for returnable bottles. The proposed recycling system has been strongly criticised by the drinks industry, which says it imposes disproportionately heavy costs. Cancellation of the system would be a potential blow to Norwegian recycling group Tomra Systems (TOM.OL), which has made major efforts to adapt its technology to fit the planned system and had been counting on significant orders from Germany.

REUTERS NEWS SERVICE

This article was kindly provided by ScoWaste.


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