New EPR requirements in force for packaging, WEEE and batteries

7 February 2024

In November 2023, with two legal acts entering into force, extended producer responsibility (EPR) for packaging, WEEE, batteries and some other products was rewritten and consolidated in Croatia.

The two acts are:

  • Packaging and Waste Packaging, Single-Use Plastic Products and Fishing Tools Containing Plastic Regulations NN 137/2023, and
  • Regulation on Management of Special Categories of Waste in Environment Fund System NN 124/2023

The new legislation retains most of the EPR requirements for WEEE and batteries regulated previously. However, there are new requirements: end-of-life financing of automotive and industrial batteries becomes exclusively an obligation of the producer and web platforms now have some EPR obligations.

The new packaging legislation substitutes the previously existing ones, implementing the EU’s Packaging Directive, and completes the full transposition of the Single-Use Plastics (SUP) Directive.

Within the EPR regime for packaging, a new definition of producer, which includes web platforms, is provided, as well as the obligation for foreign companies to establish an authorised representative.

Packaging producers must comply according to their packaging type: non-hazardous and hazardous packaging. For non-hazardous packaging, payment of the State’s waste management fee remains the only compliance solution.

The new packaging legislation imposes a mandatory deposit system for single-use beverage packaging, which coexists with the semi-voluntary deposit system for returnable packaging. It also presents new rules for deposit labels.

In addition, the new legislation introduces the remaining obligations from the SUP Directive, which were omitted by the Law on Waste Management NN 84/2021, including the financing of measures to tackle littering, the prohibition of lightweight plastic bags, and consumption reduction measures for beverage cups.

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