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Parliamentary questions
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20 February 2020
Answer given by Mr Sinkevičius
on behalf of the European Commission
Question reference: P-000280/2020

For the purposes of the Single Use Plastics Directive(1) (SUPD), the definitions in its Article 3 apply: ‘plastic’ means a material consisting of a polymer as defined in point 5 of Article 3 of Regulation (EC) No 1907/2006, to which additives or other substances may have been added, and which can function as a main structural component of final products, with the exception of natural polymers that have not been chemically modified’.

As per Recital 11, the definition of plastics for the SUPD should cover ‘(…) bio-based and biodegradable plastics regardless of whether they are derived from biomass or are intended to biodegrade over time. Paints, inks and adhesives should not be addressed by this directive and therefore these polymeric materials should not be covered by the definition’.

As per Article 12, the Commission is currently preparing guidelines, including examples of what is to be considered a single-use plastic product for the purposes of the directive, with the involvement of the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) and in consultation with Member States and stakeholders, and intends to publish those guidelines by July 2020.

(1)Directive (EU) 2019/904 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 5 June 2019 on the reduction of the impact of certain plastic products on the environment, OJ L 155, 12.6.2019, p. 1.
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