EUROPEN and more than 100 associations, including EXPRA, representing Europe’s packaging industry, have written to EU Member States, urging them to uphold the Single Market or face huge supply chain disruptions when adopting their General Approach on the Packaging and Packaging Waste Regulation (PPWR). The joint statement warns that the current approach risks unravelling the Single Market by allowing Member States to introduce their own unique restrictions – a result that would seriously jeopardise supply chains and discourage investment in much-needed technologies.
Rules to cut packaging waste and clean up the environment will only succeed if they are workable for business – which means protecting the integrity of the Single Market”, says Francesca Stevens, EUROPEN secretary-general.

The PPWR will sink or swim on its ability to draw investment into circular packaging and waste management on a continent-wide scale. This is crucial not only for the PPWR but also, given the ubiquity of packaging, for Europe’s circular economy and environmental targets. If governments go it alone, abandoning the EU’s Single Market, national barriers will spring up across Europe. This will scare investors away from financing the new technologies needed to transform packaging value chains, process waste and convert it into a tradeable commodity”, Ms Stevens adds.

Almost all goods traded across European borders use packaging, so if the availability or free movement of packaging solutions and materials is restricted, for example by national measures, this will endanger the resilience of Europe’s supply chains. Companies would have to deal with a patchwork of new rules and red tape, a result that will have serious side-effects on the economy.
We are determined to see the PPWR succeed”, Ms Stevens continues. “But it must be based on science, on a strong Single Market, and on industry’s need for a clear roadmap to full circularity. Almost all goods bought and sold within Europe are packaged. Disrupting supply chains across Europe, by granting carte blanche to governments to introduce unilateral restrictions, will severely impact jobs, growth and competitiveness, setting the clock back on the Green Deal.

You can read the full document here.