EGYPT: Parliament approves new law on waste management

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EGYPT: Parliament approves new law on waste management

In Egypt, the House of Representatives has just validated a new law introduced by the government which aims at improving waste management in several activity sectors. This new binding law will come into force after the promulgation by President Abdel Fattah al-Sissi.

A law on waste will soon be put in place in Egypt. The new legislation has just been approved thanks to the vote of the Egyptian deputies. Initiated by Egyptian Environment Minister, Yasmine Fouad, the law aims at improving waste management in several sectors in the country of the pharaohs. Companies will now be responsible for managing their waste that is from collection to treatment.

With a view to improving the recycling of industrial waste, equipment suppliers are now responsible for increasing the percentage of recyclable inputs. The new law prohibits the burning of waste in open air or its dumping in rivers. In Article 29, the new law stipulates that it is forbidden to carry out integrated non-hazardous waste management activities without obtaining a licence. The law also provides for the closure of illegal landfills throughout the country within 2 years.

Financing waste management

Thanks to the legislation that will soon be implemented in Egypt, the governorates will be better financially supported for waste management. To this end, the Egyptian government plans to allocate 25% of the revenue from property taxes to local governments.

The new law is also accompanied by coercive measures. For example, violators of the provisions of the law could be punished with a prison sentence of up to 5 years. If the violations resulted in the injury of a person with a permanent disability, the offender will be punished with 5 to 7 years in prison. He or she may be sentenced to life imprisonment if the act resulted in the death of 3 or more persons. Fines concerning polluters (water and air). The financial penalty can range from 5 million to 25 million Egyptian pounds (from 315,000 to 1.5 million dollars).

The new legislation is about to come into force as the government and private actors multiply initiatives to improve waste management through transformation, recycling and energy recovery.

Jean Marie Takouleu

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