Position Paper on the European Parliament’s Own-Initiative report on the Circular Economy Action Plan 2.0 Rapporteur Jan Huitema (Renew)

Brussels, May 2020


On 12 March, the European Commission adopted a new Circular Economy Action Plan – one of the main building blocks of the European Green Deal, Europe’s new agenda for sustainable growth. With measures along the entire life cycle of products, the new Circular Economy Action Plan (CEAP) aims to make our economy fit for a green future, strengthen our competitiveness while protecting the environment and give new rights to consumers. Building on the work done since 2015, the new CEAP focuses on the design and production for a circular economy, with the aim to ensure that the resources used are kept in the EU economy for as long as possible. The plan and the initiatives therein will be developed with the close involvement of the business and stakeholder community.[1]


The aluminium, glass and steel sectors are top performers in recycling packaging materials. With respective rates of 74,5%, 76% and 80.5% [2] in 2017, our industries have worked closely with European, national and local authorities, Extended Producer Responsibility Schemes, waste management operators and last but not least, customers, brands and civil society at large to invest in collection systems that underpin the recycling infrastructure.

As permanent materials, aluminium, glass and steel have the potential to be recycled over and over again without loss of the main intrinsic properties and thus maintain circular material loops. A ‘permanent material’ is a material whose inherent properties do not change, regardless of the number of times it goes through a recycling process. It means that once it is produced for the first time, and properly collected and processed at its end of life, it becomes the raw material for new and endless production loops. Such materials are and will remain at the heart of any proven and well-functioning Circular Economy.

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