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Brexit’s effect on British Businesses is Contingent on the Circular Economy Package

A critical topic of discussion today in the UK is the negative fiscal effect that losing the current Circular Economy Package will have on British businesses if Britain leaves the EU. If the UK Government cannot create a policy to replace the EU’s Circular Economy Package, Brexit mayl cause British businesses to lose billions of euros in ‘lost efficiency savings.’The Circular Economy Package was initially created to increase recycling throughout the EU and implement more rules on incineration and landfill. It is made up of six pieces of legislation on packaging, waste, end of life vehicles, batteries and accumulators, landfill, and waste electronic equipment. Last year, there was a debate when the European Commission withdrew and re-tabled an earlier version of the Circular Economy Package. This withdrawal of the package was seen as the Commission stalling national waste and recycling policies. The re-tabled package consisted of Ecodesign rules for products making them easier to package, and also had lower targets recycling municipal and packaging waste by 2030. At the time of this withdrawal, only the Flanders region of Belgium, the Netherlands, and Germany had dedicated themselves to a circular economy plan.

If the EU could reach the goal of adopting resource efficient models across market areas, for example electrical products or construction and ICT, it could increase gross value of the 2030 EU economy by 324 billion. The Aldersgate Group, which is an association of business, and society leaders with a goal of a sustainable economy, expressed their opinion on the topic by stating that the UK Government should quickly come up with an alternative resource efficiency policy. Nick Molho, the executive director of Aldersgate, gave five policy recommendations to the UK Government:

1)      To develop a integrated policy (that is backed by all Government departments);

2)      That products sold in the UK should be designed to minimise waste;

3)      Aid businesses in accessing financial and technical advice;

4)      Improve waste regulations;

5)      Actively encourage the re-use of materials

Currently, the revised version of the package is going through the European Parliament and Council of Ministers as part of the EU legislative process.


Issue 53