Around 110 containers with 1,864mt of electric arc furnace dust (EAFD), considered to be toxic waste, were found illegally abandoned at the Malaysian port Johor. The incident could impact the movement of containers, including those with metallic scrap, in the country.
EAFD is a by-product of steel production containing zinc, cadmium, and lead. It is classified as toxic waste under the Basel Convention. Post the Chinese ban on import of waste, Malaysia has become a destination for such material. In this recent case, the shipment came from Romania and was bound for Indonesia.
Davis Index sources in Malaysia said, the incident could mean stricter policies on imports of metallic scrap. These could be similar to the Indonesian government’s stance towards waste imports. The move may not impact prices, but rules and regulations could be tightened posing challenges for shippers.
In November, the Indonesian government suspended imports for a brief period to roll out a new import policy. Under the regulations, metal scrap was classified as waste and subjected to strict scrutiny of quality and origin.