On June 16, 2021, the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI), in collaboration with the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (MONRE), held a webinar on hearing comments for extended producer responsibility (EPR) rules in the draft Decree providing details of the Law on Environmental Protection (No. 72/2020/QH14) (LEP 2020). The webinar was organized by Mr. Du Anh Tuan, a Director of the Department of Legislation of VCCI and attended by various experts, representatives of international organizations, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), business associations and concerned companies.
*See more details about the proposed EPR regulations in the following page:
Brief report: Public consultation for new regulations on e-waste, ELV and packaging waste management of Vietnam (1) Overview of the proposed EPR system
Q&A on the proposed EPR regulations
In the seminar, after the presentation of the proposed new EPR regulations, many questions were raised to MONRE from the participants. The following is some typical questions and answers.
Q: How do we calculate the amount to be paid to the Environmental Protection Fund?
A: The recycling cost constant (Fs) in a formula is determined based on the cost of collection, transportation, storage and recycling in terms of product quantity or weight. MONRE is currently conducting a study and will also refer to examples from other countries (Korea, Taiwan, EU, etc.). Finally, the “Fs” will be determined by the National EPR Council and approved by the Minister of MONRE.
The amount of annual payment(F) =
Required recycling ratio (R) x Quantity of products/packaging materials (V) x Recycling cost constant (Fs) + Administrative cost (Fm)
Q: What penalties will be set for violations against the EPR regulations?
A: The draft Decree of the Law on Environmental Protection of 2020 does not provide for administrative penalties. It is scheduled to be issued that a separate decree that stipulates specific penalties requiring fine, that corresponds to the recycling fee and additional collection fee (30%) for not meeting the mandatory recycling ratio.
Q: When we sell lubricants to automobile or motorcycle manufacturers, is it our responsibility to collect and dispose of the final waste oil and its container? Or the manufacturer?
A: If the trade name of the final product is the manufacturer, the manufacturer is responsible for its recycling and disposal.
Q: Automobiles, motorcycles, etc. are often not brought to collection points because the consumer retains ownership of the product even after the expiration date. What measures should be taken to achieve the mandatory recycling ratio for automobiles and motorcycles?
A: The mandatory recycling ratio will be determined based on the volume of automobiles and motorcycles in circulation and disposal in the Vietnamese market. In fact, the recycling ratio will be based on the amount (kg) of parts and other materials collected regardless of the producer’s name, not by the amount of whole used cars and motorcycles collected.
Q: Since there is still no recycling technology for used zinc/carbon batteries and it is difficult to collect them, we will choose the option of the payment to the Environmental Protection Fund. It is also necessary to consider the fairness between importers and domestic producers, because if the amount of payment is not properly determined, it will lead to an increase in the price of the final product.
A: MONRE will consider the method of recycling (paragraph 7, Annex 52), appropriate ratio and payment amount for batteries and accumulators. We would like to hear the opinions of battery manufacturers, but as we have not yet been able to contact them, we encourage them to actively make suggestions in the future.
Q: Point 3 of Article 100 of the draft Decree stipulates that “producers and importers shall display the national recycling mark on the label of their products, which shall be determined by MONRE.” Is this national recycling mark consistent with the mark used internationally?
A: MONRE is open to comments on the national recycling mark and will consider amendments to this draft Decree.
Q: In accordance with Annex 52, plastic, metal and glass containers of 300mL or more and paper packaging of 100mL or more are eligible for recycling. How do we deal with containers and packaging of lesser volume? Also, on what basis is the 300mL plastic container defined?
A: The basic policy of the regulations on the volume of containers and packaging is that if the volume is above a certain level, the company will be responsible for recycling according to Article 54 of the Law on Environmental Protection (No. 72/2020/QH14), and if the volume is below that level, the company will be required to pay into the fund according to Article 55. However, the specific volume amount is still under consideration by the MONRE, and will be decided after a thorough hearing of opinions. In the case of containers, the volume may be changed to 180mL instead of 300mL, and in the case of packaging materials, the specific classification may be adjusted according to the EPR application roadmap.