Lithuania proposes EU ban on waste imports from Russia

  • 2024-03-26
  • BNS/TBT Staff

VILNIUS – Lithuania, supported by the Czech Republic, Latvia and Estonia, has proposed that the European Union ban imports of ferrous metals, copper, and aluminum waste and scrap from Russia, saying that Moscow is using the money to finance its war against Ukraine.

The proposal was tabled at the Environment Council's meeting in Brussels on Monday, the Environment Ministry said in a press release on Tuesday. 

"Lithuania proposes that the European Commission assess all options at the EU level and make a proposal to suspend imports of waste from Russia into the EU or allow member states to take unilateral restrictive measures," Ambassador Jurga Kasputiene, Lithuania's deputy permanent representative to the EU, said at the meeting. 

"We believe that such imports contribute to the financing of Russia's war against Ukraine and should be stopped," she said. 

The EU imported ferrous metals, copper, and aluminum waste and scrap, worth over 118 million euros, from Russia between 2022 and 2023, the ministry said, adding that most of these imports pass through Lithuania.

"Transboundary shipments of waste are governed by the Basel Convention and the Waste Shipment Regulation, so individual member states cannot unilaterally ban or restrict such imports at the national level," it said.