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Article | February 28, 1999
EC challenges Denmark
After years of complaints, the European Commission has begun legal infringement proceedings against Denmark. It alleges Denmark's ban on metal cans for soft drinks runs counter to the EC's directive on packaging and packaging waste.
That directive is designed to minimize the effect of packaging waste on the environment while ensuring the free movement of goods within the European Union. The proceedings have been expanded to include all Danish provisions that require manufacturers to sell products in reusable packaging only. European can manufacturers and the steel packaging industry first complained in 1995 that Denmark's regulations created a trade barrier contrary to EU free movement of goods legislation. Denmark has rejected these arguments contending its legislation complies with the environmental goals of the directive in question. Furthermore the EC directive is not fully operational and its essential requirements are "very unclear and in broad terms" says the Danish government.
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