Govt considers making scrap recycling organised sector

Govt considers making scrap recycling organised sector

The Ministry of Mines has recently issued the National Non-Ferrous Metal Scrap Recycling Framework, 2020 covering key non-ferrous metals like aluminium, copper, zinc and lead.

The framework has been released with an objective to promote a formal and well-organised recycling ecosystem in the country which is currently highly unorganised with heavy dependence on imported scrap. It also aims to produce high quality scrap for quality secondary production thus minimising the dependence on imports and encouraging economic wealth creation, job creation and increased contribution to GDP through metal recycling.

This framework is also seen to be prepared in the backdrop of the upcoming Vehicle Scrappage Policy for automobiles, which will ensure sufficient availability of domestic scrap in the country. Some of the key recommendations are:

Setting up of a central authority for recycling of metals as Metal Recycling Authority (MRA)

Establishing the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) for quality of scrap

Standard procedures for recycling

Processing of scrap in consonance with the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEFCC) rules and guidelines for environment protection

These recommendations will strengthen efforts of the domestic aluminium industry demanding formulation of standards for scrap in the country. As per industry sources, the domestic aluminium industry is facing severe threats from increasing scrap imports, whose share in total aluminium imports increased from 52% in FY16 to 67% in FY21, resulting in Forex outgo of $2 billion (Rs 14,000 crore). India has become a scrap dumping ground for the world, specifically the USA, resulting in a 327% rise in scrap imports from USA in the last five years.

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The framework also focuses to extend necessary support to promote research and development (R&D) in metal scrap recycling while adopting data based analysis and policy making at all stages of the recycling chain. It highlights promotion of 6Rs, namely, the principles of Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, Recover, Redesign and Remanufacture through scientific handling, processing, and disposal of all types of non-ferrous scrap, through authorised centres. Also, importance has been given for creating public awareness about the benefits of efficient scrap collection, segregation and recycling with quality certification mechanism for recycled secondary metal and a recycled logo may be put on all recycled products to highlight circular economy.

The structured plan includes the setting up of MRA by Q1 FY22, formulation of quality standards, certification, process standards for recycling by Q2/Q3 of FY 22. The action plans in FY 2022-23 will be focused for regulating the scrap collection, segregation and dismantling units with a proper framework for registration, review mechanism, data collection and reporting mechanism for registered recycling units, ranking and performance evaluation of recycling units and development of specified metal recycling zones and urban mining facilities.

Expediting all these action plans will be the key for success of Indian Recycling industry to encourage efficient utilisation and recycling of indigenous scrap and boost a domestic circular economy. This will create significant opportunities for revenue generation, creation of jobs and MSMEs and encourage domestic value addition in the country in line with greater vision to make an AtmaNirbhar Bharat.

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Also read: Scrappage policy: 6.8 mn vehicles "unfit"

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