PHNOM PENH, July 18 (Xinhua) — Cambodia will send 83 containers of plastic waste back to the United States and Canada, government spokesman Phay Siphan said on Thursday.
The rubbish-filled containers were discovered on Tuesday at the Sihanoukville Autonomous Port, which is the country’s largest sea port in southwestern Preah Sihanouk province.
“The origins of the garbage were from the U.S. and Canada,” he said during a press conference here. “We will send those rubbish-filled containers back to their original sources.”
Siphan said the containers had been brought in to Cambodia in a number of different shipments, starting from October last year.
Environment Ministry Secretary of State and Spokesman Neth Pheaktra told Xinhua on Thursday that the garbage totally weighed about 1,600 tons, and 70 containers were shipped from the U.S., while 13 were brought in to the country from Canada.
“Cambodia does not allow any import of plastic waste to the country for recycling,” he said. “Cambodia is not the rubbish bin for other countries to dispose of any kind of waste.”
Pheaktra said fake import documents showed that the containers held recyclables, but after being scanned at the port, they were found to contain plastic waste.