Published: Mon, January 20, 2020
Global News | By Blake Casey

Malaysia sends back trash to Sri Lanka

Malaysia sends back trash to Sri Lanka

"If people want to see us as the rubbish dump of the world, you dream on", Yeo told reporters during an inspection at a port in northern Penang state.

"It is not about money but dignity".

In late May this year, the Malaysian government announced it will send back 3,000 tonnes of contaminated waste to countries including the United Kingdom, the US, Australia and Canada, after sixty shipping containers had been allegedly smuggled into illegal processing facilities in the country. We are not supposed to pay them to send it back.

The region has been flooded with plastic from more developed economies such as the United States and Britain since 2018, after China - which previously boasted a massive recycling industry - ordered a halt to most imports.

The UK government said it received a request from Malaysian authorities past year to repatriate the waste and some containers had already arrived back. "We just want to send back (the waste) and we just want to give a message that Malaysia is not the dumping site of the world", she added.

She said Malaysia has since come up with a comprehensive plan to strengthen enforcement through a special task force involving related agencies.

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Mr Ghimire said that the incessant rainfall in the region has made it hard to obtain information about the missing foreigners. Five others who were also part of the group have been rescued after they took shelter in a nearby lodge.

Meanwhile, the minister said despite the dropped in the number of illegal plastic recycling factories nationwide, the enforcement activity against such factories will continue.

Yeo said the key measure to curb unwanted plastic imports was to stop them at the source - the ports of entry.

"The cost of returning back the containers of plastic waste was borne by the importers or shipping companies".

Malaysia subsequently emerged as a major target of illegal waste trafficking, but its government has attempted to tackle the reputation and has returned shipments of waste in the past.

"Refusing to become the world's new landfill, the country has announced the return of several containers, particularly to France", the statement said. It did not identify the company.

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