On 16 March 2016, Antti Ilmari Peltomaki, Deputy Director General, DG GROW, European Commission, presented the Circular Economy Package in the European Parliament Committee on Industry, Research and Energy (ITRE). It was the first time when members of the Committee had a change to exchange views on the Circular Economy Package (CEP).

The debate was opened by Antti Ilmari Peltomaki, Deputy Director General, DG GROW, European Commission, who presented the CEP. He explained that the legislative proposals on waste set out ambitious and achievable targets which are to improve waste management in Europe. The Commission will make sure that the proposed instruments are implemented across the EU in a coherent way. In addition, the Commission would like to facilitate the use of bio-based products through the Green Public Procurement. Eco-design will be used as a tool to focus on properties of specific products.

Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) welcomed the CEP by highlighting that the circular economy creates new business opportunities for the European industry. A creation of a single market of the secondary raw materials and establishment of appropriate standards for these seem to be priorities of the ITRE Committee.

There were concerns raised by some MEPs about the lack of clarity on definitions, calculation methodologies and statistics used by the Commission to set targets. The issue of whether the level of targets is ambitious enough was discussed.

In addition, MEPs would like the Commission to propose financial incentives for the industry to encourage investments in innovative and outline available European funds which can be used to support investments in the circular economy.

Next steps

21 April 2016: Presentation of the draft report inthe ENVI Committee
23 May 2016: Consideration of the draft report in the ENVI Committee
1 June 2016: Deadline for the amendments in the ENVI Committee
14 June 2016: Consideration of draft opinion in the ITRE Committee
16 June 2016: Deadline for amendmentsin the ITRE Committee
20 June 2016: Environmental Council Conclusions on the Circular Economy Action Plan
11 July 2016: Consideration of amendments in the ITRE Committee
13 October 2016: Vote in the ITRE Committee
7 November 2016: Vote in the ENVI Committee