At the meeting, Vietnam's prime minister Ruan Chunfu (Nguy nXuanPh C) said there are still a lot of waste containers piled up in Vietnam's port, requiring the Ministry of natural resources and the environment and relevant government departments to collect opinions in order to better manage the imported waste. He demanded that coordination among departments at all levels should be strengthened and responsibilities allocated clearly so as to prevent Vietnam from becoming a dumping site and affecting the ecological environment and people's lives. He said it was necessary to investigate and deal with the garbage bins that entered Vietnam without the recipients, and could prosecute some environmental violations in order to prevent the illegal entry of the waste into Vietnam.
Ruan Chunfu stressed the need to review all remaining permits and stop issuing new waste import licences. The Ministry of natural resources and environment should examine the approval of past licences and strictly handle illegal officials and enterprises. The Ministry of industry and trade must also re examine the issue of re export of temporary imports.
After the meeting, Ruan Chunfu agreed to issue the Premier's Directive as an important document of the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment and relevant government departments throughout the country.
According to media reports, Vietnam is planning to take legislative action to deal with the problem of waste imports. It is reported that Vietnam will review the legal documents on waste import management to make necessary amendments.
Last week, Vietnam's Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment held a press conference to discuss potential policy changes following the recent backlog of major port containers.
The Ministry of natural resources and environment said that the port of international operation in Newport, Xigong has 4480 waste containers. About 20% are waste paper, the rest are other materials, mainly plastic.
From mid June to October, the port authorities imposed a ban on waste plastics from the port of Newport, Xigong.
But now, the government is taking legislative action. At a press conference, officials said the government would "revise the legal documents on the management of waste import, take into account environmental protection, and establish a management, control and prevention mechanism for the trade and import of waste."
According to the details of the press conference, the government aims to "gradually reduce the import of waste materials from foreign countries and increase the reuse and recycling of domestic waste materials."
In the short term, the government said it would crack down on containers that stay in port for more than 90 days. According to the press conference, it will also require the port to "carefully check the environmental permit for imported waste containers before allowing unloading". The Secretary for maritime affairs of Vietnam explained the short term rules in an interview with state media.
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