Cyprus Mail

EC warns of sanctions on poor waste management

The Koshi solid waste management plant

THE European Commission has warned Cyprus it will pursue legal action as the country has failed to comply with obligations under EU law on waste management and prevention.

“Cyprus failed to revise, extend or replace the existing national waste management for the coming period, while also lagging behind in waste prevention,” one of the warnings published on the Commission’s website said.

“The commission sent a letter of formal notice in October 2015, urging the Cypriot authorities to adopt the necessary waste documents. Although Cyprus has taken some measures in the field of municipal waste, the necessary plans for other waste streams are still missing. The commission is, therefore, sending a reasoned opinion,” the authority stated.

The EU is also urging Cyprus to notify full transposition of the tobacco products directive which aims at ensuring a high level of health protection for European citizens. Parliament was expected to vote on a new smoking legislation which aims to align national legislation with the directive in early December, but has yet to do so. The new legislation includes provisions for electronic cigarettes and steep fines for offenders.

Sending a reasoned opinion is part of the infringement procedure which the commission implements as it has the power to take legal action against a member state that is not respecting its obligations under EU law.

The procedure begins with a request for information (a ‘letter of formal notice’) to the member state concerned, which must be answered within a specified period, usually two months.

If the Commission is not satisfied with the information and concludes that the member state in question is failing to fulfil its obligations, it may send a formal request to comply with EU law (a ‘reasoned opinion’). Usually the case is referred to the Court of Justice two months later. If the court rules against a country, the state must then take the necessary measures to comply with the judgment.



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