Switzerland welcomes results of waste conference

Switzerland has welcomed the results of an international conference on the disposal of dangerous waste which ended in Indonesia on Friday.

This content was published on June 27, 2008 - 19:27

Among the agreements reached was a decision to increase cooperation between three Geneva-based international organisations working to prevent pollution caused by the dumping of chemical and hazardous waste.

The Swiss Environment Office said this had been one of the targets of the Swiss delegation.

The head of the Swiss delegation, Franz Perrez, told the Swiss news agency that he was "satisfied, or even enthusiastic" about the result. He said the creation of "synergies" between the three organisations would "revitalise" the Basel Convention on the transborder movement of hazardous waste.

However, many delegates expressed great disappointment that the meeting had failed to agree that the export of toxic waste to developing countries should be banned.

Such a ban was strongly supported by African countries, and Switzerland, like the European Union, already observes it, but it was opposed by the United States, Japan, Canada and India. They maintained that this ban would stifle recycling industries in the developing world.

Switzerland and Indonesia proposed holding an informal meeting next year to tackle the problem again.

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