On 17th of September, the Dutch Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management published a draft decision as a preliminary response to an application for a new WEEE agreement from the producers’ association OPEN Foundation. We would like to raise your attention to this draft, since, if the decision comes into force on 01/01/2021, there will be changes affecting manufacturers and importers registered in the Netherlands.
What is the OPEN Foundation and what does it want to achieve?
OPEN is an association of previously independent foundations representing producers’ interests in the Netherlands. The newly created OPEN Foundation aims to become the leading umbrella organisation in the Netherlands, to which all manufacturers and importers who place electric and electronic appliances on the Dutch market must adhere and pay their waste management contributions. This centralised control function intends to ensure that the producer obligations are implemented for all producers, which is the task that OPEN will take over. The reason behind changing the current system is that the statutory collection rate of 65 per cent has not been achieved (expected to be 48 per cent in 2019 according to the report of the National WEEE Register). The OPEN Foundation intends to enhance the infrastructure and expects to meet the collection rate within two years.
What does the application want to achieve?
The OPEN Foundation has submitted an application for a declaration of general binding effect (nl.: Avv) for an agreement on the advance disposal fee in relation to WEEE in accordance with article 15.36 of the Environmental Management Act for a period of five years, starting on 01/01/2021.
Article 15.36 enables the Minister to declare agreements on advance disposal fees generally binding for anyone who places such products on the Dutch market.
If the Avv is approved, the OPEN Foundation will organise and manage the financing of WEEE collection and recycling in the Netherlands as per 2021. Statements can be submitted to the Ministry within six weeks after publication of the draft decision. Subsequently, probably no earlier than November this year, the Ministry will officially decide on whether the Avv, and thus the new WEEE agreement, will enter into force, be rejected or adapted.
What are the consequences of the decision for you as producer?
If the agreement is declared generally binding, the OPEN Foundation becomes the umbrella organisation. Previous collection, sorting and recycling companies are to continue existing and to be commissioned by the OPEN Foundation. Accordingly, the recycling market is to remain open. For manufacturers, the restructuring would mean that the advance disposal contributions would have to be paid exclusively to the OPEN Foundation, as only the OPEN Foundation would implement the manufacturer obligations.
As the draft decision indicates, the Ministry expects the OPEN Foundation to have increased financial capacity with an Avv. This would help to achieve the collection rate. Furthermore, a level playing field for all producers with a fair distribution of costs would contribute to efficient waste management. 66.4 per cent of all producers registered in the Netherlands (2,080 companies), who are responsible for 80.3 per cent (500,428 tons) of the quantity of electric and electronic appliances put on the market, support the request of the OPEN Foundation.
As soon as the Ministry announces its decision, we will of course inform you. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us at any time. Florian Spreu at take-e-way GmbH will be pleased to answer your question: phone: +49/40/750687-0 or e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org