SEBERANG PERAI, June 14 — Penang now has 397 containers filled with plastic waste imported from 12 different countries, the Penang Customs Department revealed today.
This is an additional 132 containers to the 265 containers that were stranded at the North Butterworth Container Terminal (NBCT) since January.
Penang Customs Department director Datuk Saidi Ismail said all of these containers were imported by 11 companies without Approved Permit (AP) and some were imported under wrong codes.
He said each 40-foot container carries a maximum payload of up to 15 tonnes so this meant there are about 5,955 tonnes of plastic waste in these containers.
“We are finding more containers of plastic waste that were imported from foreign countries when we inspect the port,” he said earlier today at the Penang Customs Department store in Bagan Jermal here.
The Customs Department has initiated legal action against these companies included issuing compounds of RM1,000 per container.
A majority of the containers were imported from Hong Kong (94), United States (68), Germany (28), Canada (20), Japan (14) and several other countries.
On top of the illegal import of plastic wastes, four companies with AP are importing four to five containers of plastic waste each month.
“Just last month, there was import of 85 containers of plastic waste by these companies with AP,” he said.
Two weeks ago, Saidi conducted a site visit of NBCT along with state exco Phee Boon Poh and revealed that 265 containers with plastic waste had been stranded there since January.
Phee reportedly said that the state had been instructed to send the containers back to their country of origin.