Russia: The EPR reform postponed

Russia has postponed the adoption of the regulatory framework for the reformed extended producer responsibility (EPR) system to the end of 2022 which means that the revised system is to be operational as of 2023.

Initially, it was intended to introduce the reform in early 2022. The reform would have imposed the obligation on manufacturers and importers to recycle or reuse (“utilise”) 100% of packaging they place on the Russian market.

The revised EPR system will also include several registers: product manufacturer register; importer register; packaging register and the register of entities or sole traders performing waste management operations.

Russia first introduced EPR in the late 2014. The recycling (utilisation) targets were set in 2016-2017 for some products and they were only 5-10%. It was impossible to accurately calculate the number of manufactures and importers. The expert evaluation showed around 160,000 companies but in 2016 only 10,195 submitted ERP reports.

The aim of the revised EPR system is to address the gaps of the existing system, to identify and register all economic operators subject to EPR obligations and to create a transparent control and recording system. It will also provide a motivation for the separate waste collection.