EU and China agree on further cooperation on circular economy

The EU and China agreed on a joint roadmap for cooperation on circular economy. This roadmap defines the actions that both the EU and China will take to implement in 2024 under the EU-China Memorandum of Understanding on the circular economy. Actions outlined in the roadmap focus on plastics, including the ongoing negotiations for a global plastics treaty, but also battery value chains and remanufacturing.

Commissioner for the Environment, Oceans and Fisheries Virginijus Sinkevičius said: “The transition to the circular economy is a global challenge and requires major shifts in all countries around the world. With this roadmap we are continuing our fruitful collaboration with China to advance the circular economy and create new opportunities for more sustainable production and consumption. Closer and continuous engagement with China is key to achieving not only our circular economy but also other shared environmental ambitions.”

The first workshop on the transition to a circular economy for plastics in the EU and China is being planned for May 2024. It will discuss in more detail issues related to design and life-cycle approach in the circular economy, the EU’s and China’s single use plastics measures and latest developments on bio-based, biodegradable and compostable plastics. Workshops on battery value chains and remanufacturing will follow in the course of 2024.

The joint roadmap was agreed in the margins of the World Circular Economy Forum, between the European Commission’s Director-General for Environment and the Vice-Chairman of China’s National Development and Reform Commission. It will be reviewed at the next High-Level Dialogue on Circular Economy.