Ministers wrap up EU packaging deal

Conciliation possible as environment council rejects MEPs' position on revision of 1994 directive

EU environment ministers set up a potential conciliation battle with the European parliament today by confirming a political agreement to revise the 1994 packaging directive. The accord sets recycling targets well below those wanted by MEPs. It also postpones by at least three years any consideration of stricter measures to introduce producer responsibility or packaging waste prevention plans.

The recycling targets were left unchanged from a preliminary agreement reached by ministers in June. The overall recycling target should be a minimum of 55% and a maximum of 80%, to be reached by 2008 (EED 26/06/02). The parliament wants instead to see a 65% minimum achieved by 2006 (EED 03/09/02).

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