A new international agreement on plastics is due to be adopted in 2024. Experts discussed it in Prague at an informal meeting of the EU Council’s Working Party on Global Issues (WPIEI Global). The circular economy and the health impacts of microplastics were discussed and countries also clarified the EU-wide position for further negotiations.
The purpose of the meeting was to follow up on the resolution on plastics Ending plastic pollution: towards an international legally binding instrument and to informally discuss key issues ahead of the challenging international negotiations. A global agreement on plastics will be addressed at the annual meeting of the UNEP Sub-Committee of Permanent Representatives in October and then at the first meeting of the Intergovernmental Negotiating Committee (INC) on Plastics in Uruguay in November.
The new international agreement on plastics is intended to establish global rules for those areas of pollution not yet addressed by existing agreements, in particular in the life cycle stages of plastics, including their design and production. The main objective is to reduce and stop the release of plastics into the environment.
The negotiation of an international agreement on plastics has been handed over to Sweden as the next EU Presidency. The Czech Presidency is providing support and cooperation to Sweden.