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Producer Responsibility Obligations (Northern Ireland) Order 1998

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Producer responsibility: generalN.I.

3.—(1) For the purpose of promoting or securing an increase in the re-use, recovery or recycling of products or materials, the Department may by regulations make provision for imposing producer responsibility obligations on such persons, and in respect of such products or materials, as may be prescribed.

(2) The power of the Department to make regulations shall be exercisable only after consultation with persons appearing to the Department to be representative of persons whose interests are, or are likely to be, substantially affected by the regulations which it proposes to make.

(3) Except in the case of regulations for the implementation of—

(a)any obligations of the United Kingdom under the Community Treaties; or

(b)any international agreement to which the United Kingdom is for the time being a party,

the power to make regulations shall be exercisable only where the Department, after such consultation as is required by paragraph (2), is satisfied as to the matters specified in paragraph (6).

(4) The powers conferred by paragraph (1) shall also be exercisable, in a case falling within sub-paragraph (a) or (b) of paragraph (3), for the purpose of sustaining a minimum level of (rather than promoting or securing an increase in) re-use, recovery or recycling of products or materials.

(5) In making regulations by virtue of sub-paragraph (a) or (b) of paragraph (3), the Department shall have regard to the matters specified in paragraph (6); and in its application in relation to the power conferred by virtue of paragraph (4), paragraph (6) shall have effect as if—

(a)any reference to an increase in the re-use, recovery or recycling of products or materials were a reference to the sustaining of a minimum level of re-use, recovery or recycling of the products or materials in question; and

(b)any reference to the production of environmental or economic benefits included a reference to the sustaining of a minimum level of any such existing benefits,

and any reference in this Article or Article 4 to securing or achieving any such benefits shall accordingly include a reference to sustaining a minimum level of any such existing benefits.

(6) The matters mentioned in paragraphs (3) and (5) are—

(a)that the proposed exercise of the power would be likely to result in an increase in the re-use, recovery or recycling of the products or materials in question;

(b)that any such increase would produce environmental or economic benefits;

(c)that those benefits are significant as against the likely costs resulting from the imposition of the proposed producer responsibility obligation;

(d)that the burdens imposed on businesses by the regulations are the minimum necessary to secure those benefits; and

(e)that those burdens are imposed on persons most able to make a contribution to the achievement of the relevant targets—

(i)having regard to the desirability of acting fairly between persons who manufacture, process, distribute or supply products or materials; and

(ii)taking account of the need to ensure that the proposed producer responsibility obligation is so framed as to be effective in achieving the purposes for which it is to be imposed,

but nothing in head (i) of sub-paragraph (e) shall be taken to prevent regulations imposing a producer responsibility obligation on any class or description of person to the exclusion of any others.

(7) The Department shall have a duty to exercise the power to make regulations in the manner which it considers best calculated to secure that the exercise does not have the effect of restricting, distorting or preventing competition or, if it is likely to have any such effect, that the effect is no greater than is necessary for achieving the environmental or economic benefits mentioned in paragraph (6).

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