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Paper mills report Operation Green Fence benefits

International Recycling News

China Customs cites improved yields at Chinese paper mills as result of increased oversight of incoming scrap shipments.

Recycling Today Staff January 21, 2014

If recyclers in North America look back at the dollars-and-cents impact of Operation Green Fence in 2013 and see red ink, it may or may not comfort them to read about positive bottom-line effects being touted by the General Administration of Customs of the People’s Republic of China (China Customs), one of the agencies that oversees Operation Green Fence.

A mid-January 2014 news release from China Customs refers to a study conducted by a regional papermaking association claiming improved pulping yields thanks to Operation Green Fence.

“According to [an] estimation made by the Fuyang Paper Association, papermaking companies in Fuyang earned RMB40 to 65 ($6.60 to $10.75) more on each ton of imported waste paper due to the lower moisture content and less foreign substances [in bales.].”

The news release, posted here, continues, “In this way, Green Fence has brought in RMB70 million ($11.5 million) more for the local papermaking industry (which imported 1.5 million tons of waste paper) for the first 10 months of 2013, according to the association.”

The China Customs news release connects the positive financial news to its inspection regimen at Chinese ports. “There are less plastic films and pop cans hidden in the waste paper now and the moisture content is lower,” it quotes an inspector at the Fuyang Customs Office as saying as he looked at inbound bales in December 2013.

“The foreign suppliers realize now we will say ‘no’ to those waste paper [bales] whose classification is confusing, and we will no longer accept those that contain foreign substances,” the inspector, surnamed Wang, adds.

China Customs says the Hangzhou Customs District received some 6.5 million tons of scrap materials from February to November 2013 and “seized at the scene 3,508 tons of those whose import were prohibited by the state. The antismuggling bureau has filed for investigation 11 solid waste smuggling cases involving a value of more than RMB490 million ($81 million).”

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