Written Notification Procedure

Established criteria define the overall degree of environmental risk posed by shipments of waste which determine the control procedure that shall apply for specific waste streams. Shipments of waste posing minimum or no environmental threat are generally subject to Article 18 controls (general information procedure). Meanwhile, more stringent Article 4 controls (Written Notification and Consent Procedure) apply to waste shipments having significant environmental risk. In terms of Regulation (EC) No 1013/2006 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 14 June 2006 on shipments of waste known as the Waste Shipment Regulations (WSR) and the Waste Management (Shipment of Waste) Regulation (S.L.549.65), the Environment and Resources Authority (ERA) is the only competent authority in Malta responsible for Transfrontier Shipment (TFS) of waste.

Waste shipments under Maltese jurisdiction subject to the Written Notification and Consent Procedure can only take place once ERA issues its consent. A Notification shall cover a shipment of waste from its first place of loading until its interim and non-interim recovery or disposal is completed. To apply for exports of waste, the application needs to be submitted to the competent authority of dispatch, (the country of export) against payment of application and processing fees. Consent also needs to be sought from the competent authorities of destination and transit (if applicable) after the Notification Package is transmitted to all competent authorities concerned by ERA (as competent authority of dispatch) and any payments to the respective competent authorities are settled.

Kindly refer to the table below to see the application fees charged by ERA:

​​Application fee for Transit of waste subject to Written Notification and Consent Procedure ​€250
​Application fee for Export of waste subject to Written Notification and Consent Procedure ​€350
​Application fee for Import of waste subject to Written Notification and Consent Procedure €500
Processing of a Movement Form (per shipment) ​€35
*Please note that application fees are non-reimbursable and non-transferable.

Waste exports:

Anyone intending to export waste subject to the Written Notification and Consent Procedure should make contact with the Environmental Permitting Unit on tfs.permitting@era.org.mt and provide the following details:

    ·    Description of waste
    ·    Details of notifier
    ·    EWC code/s
    ·    Type of operation
    ·    Country of destination

Once this information is validated, a new permit number will be issued accordingly. This is necessary to complete all documentation. Preparation of the new Notification Package should start weeks in advance before submission as this process might take time. Afterwards, the process described in the following sections shall commence.

Section A: General requirements

A valid Environmental Permit issued by ERA is required if the notifier is pre-processing or storing waste at an owned facility prior to export. In the case of the latter, the facility has to be covered by an Environmental Permit which guarantees that the type of waste intended for export can actually be pre-processed or stored in this facility. In the event that a broker or dealer acts as the notifier, a valid Waste Broker Permit issued by ERA is required to export waste from Malta.

Section B: The Notification Package

The Notification Package submitted to ERA must consist of five Appendices. Kindly refer to the list below for more information regarding the documentation to be included in the Notification Package:

Appendix A: General Information

   ·     Completed Notification Form [Download Template]
   ·     Completed Movement Form [Download Template​]
   ·     Annex 1: List of waste carriers
   ·     Annex 2: Details of shipping route
   ·     Annex 3: List of waste generators
   ·     Annex 4: Contact details of all competent authorities
   ·     ​Annex 5: Material Safety Data Sheet (if any)

Appendix B: Statutory Contracts

A legally enforceable contract between the notifier and consignee has to be submitted if these are not under the control of a single legal entity. This contract must include all obligations specified in the WSR and shall be concluded and effective at the time of notification until expiry. If a waste stream is destined for interim recovery or disposal operations, additional obligations are required.

Furthermore, in the event that a broker or dealer acts as the notifier, a legally enforceable contract between the waste generator/producer and the broker or dealer is also required. This contract must include obligations which need to be fulfilled by all parties and shall be concluded and effective at the time of notification until expiry.

Templates of each contract are available from ERA upon request.

Appendix C: Financial guarantee or equivalent insurance

Shipments of waste subject to the written notification and consent procedure must be covered by a financial guarantee or equivalent insurance before waste leaves production or pre-processing/storage site. Its purpose is to ensure that enough finances are made available by the notifier to fulfil take back obligations in case of any accidents or legal infringements. The financial guarantee or insurance will usually be in favour of ERA, however this may change as agreed prior to the notification process. The original financial guarantee or equivalent insurance must be delivered to ERA where it shall be kept until a request for its release in writing (through e-mail) is made by the guarantor.

If the notifier is unable to provide evidence of the financial guarantee/insurance prior to commencing shipments, a letter of intent may be submitted as a temporary substitute. The letter of intent consists of a declaration from the notifier regarding his/her intentions to submit a financial guarantee or equivalent insurance while the Notification Package is reviewed by the respective competent authorities. ERA can still issue its consent despite no financial guarantee or equivalent insurance is in place. However, shipments cannot commence until the original financial guarantee or equivalent insurance is received and approved.

The validity period of the financial guarantee/ insurance must commence on the date of authorisation (Notification Form Block 6) until all disposal/recovery certificates issued by the consignee are received and approved by ERA. However, ERA recognizes that financial institutions may wish to limit their liabilities to specific dates. A validity period of two years from the date of authorisation is suggested to allow sufficient time for shipments to take place and waste to be treated after the Notification expires. If any disposal or recovery certificates are pending prior to the expiry of a financial guarantee/insurance, the guarantor must inform ERA in writing (through e-mail) a minimum of two weeks before expiry about his/her intentions to provide pending recovery/disposal certificates or renew the financial guarantee/insurance. ERA shall proceed to claim the financial guarantee/insurance for any pending disposal or recovery certificates if within at least one full working day prior to expiry:

   ·    the guarantor fails to contact ERA in writing (through e-mail) giving reasons for any delays or other issues about his/her intentions to renew the financial guarantee/insurance, or
    ·      the original renewed financial guarantee/insurance is not received and acknowledged by ERA.

In circumstances where such arrangement is not possible, ERA shall evaluate each on a case by case basis as long as this does not comprise the ability of ERA to meet its obligations.

The assessment of financial guarantees or equivalent insurance shall be facilitated by their submission in a common format. For this purpose, templates of financial guarantees or equivalent insurance are available from ERA upon request. The wording used shall be followed as closely as possible, subject to minor variations to accommodate individual banking/insurance practices or procedures. Changes to the wording of the standard templates will be referred for legal advice within ERA as to whether such changes are significant. The use of non-standard financial guarantee/insurance or significant variations from the standard template may lead to delays for acceptance.

The financial guarantee/insurance can be released when ERA receives all recovery or disposal certificates pertaining to the said Notification. However, ERA expects the guarantor/notifier to make a request in writing (through e-mail) for its release.

In order to calculate the amount of the financial guarantee/insurance, the notifier shall provide ERA with the following information:

   ·    Number of active shipments to be covered by the financial guarantee/insurance (i.e. the maximum number of shipments that the notifier intends to have in transit and awaiting disposal or recovery, at any one time, subject to the issuing of recovery/disposal certificate/s.)
   ·     Quantity of waste to be covered by each active shipment
   ·     Disposal cost per tonne
   ·     Shipping costs from the facility/storage site in Malta to the recovery/disposal facility abroad
   ·     Storage costs for 90 days at the last port of call

The financial guarantee or equivalent insurance covering costs for transport, recovery or disposal and storage of waste can be calculated as follows:

Size of financial guarantee or equivalent insurance = N [3(SH+ST) + T (Q)]

N = number of active shipments
SH = Cost of shipment from the waste generator to the receiving facility
ST = Cost of storage for 90 days at the first port of call
T = Cost of treatment (per tonne)
Q = Quantity of waste (tonne)
(Please note that this formula is only used for guidance purposes)

Appendix D: License certificate of the disposal/ recovery facility

A copy of the relevant authorization (license certificates) of the disposal/recovery facility under which the latter operates according to import state law pursuant to Articles 9, 10 and 11 of Council Directive 74/442/EEC of 15 July 1975 on waste (as amended), has to be provided including any variations to the original authorization. This license certificate needs to include type and duration as well as the categories of waste which can be accepted in this treatment facility.

Appendix E: Carrier’s documents

The following documents have to be included in the Notification Package:


   ·    Waste Carrier Permit – Relevant license certificates (and/or authorisation/registration numbers) of all intended transport companies for the movement of waste according to export/transit/import state law to be provided for each, where applicable.
   ·     Insurance Certificate – Copy of a third party liability insurance certificate of vehicles transporting the waste by road and vessels transporting the waste by sea for each transport company, which shall cover damage to third parties including persons arising from the movement of waste

If the above two documents cannot be obtained, a letter of declaration from carriers declaring that they are licensed to transport dangerous goods according to export/transit/import state law can be submitted. The waste carriers also need to disclose whether their vehicles/vessels are insured for third party liability, covering damage to third parties including persons.

Standard Written Notification and Consent Procedure

  1. The Notification Package including all original documents must be submitted to ERA against payment of application and movement document processing fees.
  2. The Notification Package is carefully reviewed by ERA and any required changes or missing information will be referred back to the attention of the notifier.
  3. When the Notification Package satisfies our requirements, ERA will initiate the formal notification procedure on behalf of the notifier, and transmit the Notification to all competent authorities concerned. For this purpose, once all documentation is in place, the notifier has to collect the original Notification Package together with accompanying covering letters to make the appropriate number of copies which need to be returned to ERA. The original Notification Package shall be transmitted by ERA to the competent authority of destination with copies to the consignee and competent authorities of transit (if applicable). The notifier is kindly requested to make the necessary arrangements including payment of any outstanding fees with a courier company of his/her choice to collect the documents from ERA’s premises when the original Notification Package and copies are submitted.
  4. Once the competent authority of destination is satisfied with the Notification Package, it shall transmit an acknowledgement (Notification Form Block 19 completed) to the notifier with copies to other competent authorities concerned. This shall be done within three working days of receipt of the properly completed Notification Package.
  5. Subsequently, all competent authorities shall communicate their decision in writing according to one of the following:
​​​​·         Consent without conditions;

·         Consent with conditions;
·         Objection.

After the competent authority of destination transmits its decision, ERA’s decision shall follow. If consent is given by all competent authorities concerned and a financial guarantee or equivalent insurance covering the notification is received and acknowledged by ERA, shipments can commence following the Movement Document Tracking Procedure. Kindly refer to the sections below for more information regarding time periods for consent.
 

Any interested individuals are kindly requested to abide by the above procedure so as to ensure a timely processing of documentation. ERA reserves the right to supplement or amend the above mentioned procedure as necessary.

Waste imports/transits:

Kindly contact the Environmental Permitting Unit on tfs.permitting@era.org.mt for information regarding the TFS procedure for imports/transits of waste.

Compliance following Notification approval

Please note that all information included in the Notification is the sole responsibility of the notifier and any wrong declarations or information shall be investigated accordingly. All shipments of waste may only take place after fulfilment of Article 16(a) and (b) and during the period of validity of the tacit and written consents of all competent authorities. ERA reserves the right to cancel, suspend, revoke and/or withdraw (in part or whole) its consent and inform the notifier and all competent authorities concerned in writing (through e-mail) in case of any infringements or for any reason as deemed appropriate by the Authority. Kindly contact the Compliance & Enforcement Unit on ceu.shipments@era.org.mt for any queries regarding the Movement Document Tracking Procedure.

Additional information

·         Accepted language

Maltese and English are the only languages accepted by ERA to be used by the exporter, importer, recovery/disposal facility, competent authority of destination, transit and dispatch. An official translation might be requested by ERA for documents or communications received in any other language than those accepted at the notifier’s own expense.

·         Interim operations

Shipments of waste can undergo interim operations in an interim facility prior to being moved to a non-interim facility for non-interim operations. Most often interim operations consist of pre-processing or temporary storage of waste. For shipments of waste destined for interim operations, the notifier needs to complete an additional Movement Document (Annex IV), which shall accompany the Movement Form throughout its journey. Templates of Annex IV are available from ERA upon request.

·         Pre-consented facilities

Competent authorities may decide to issue a pre-consent to certain treatment facilities under their jurisdiction. Exports to pre-consented facilities can be covered by Notifications for up to 3 years while standard consented facilities are covered by a maximum one-year period. Therefore interested individuals are kindly requested to verify whether the intended treatment facility is pre-consented or not.

·         Time periods for consent

  §  For shipments of waste destined for recovery or disposal within the Community the competent authorities of destination, dispatch and transit shall have 30-days following the transmission of the acknowledgement from the competent authority of destination to submit their consent/refusal and any imposed conditions to the notifier, copying all competent authorities. Tacit consent by the competent authority of transit may be assumed if no objection is lodged within the 30-day time limit.

  § For shipments of waste destined for disposal within the Community with transit via one or more third countries the competent authority of dispatch shall ask the competent authority of third countries whether they wish to send their written consent to the planned shipment. In case of parties to the Basel Convention, within 60-days following the transmission of the acknowledgement from the competent authority of destination, unless it has waived this right in accordance with the terms of that Convention or in the case of countries not parties to the Basel Convention, within a period agreed between the competent authorities.

  § For shipments of waste destined for recovery within the Community with transit via one or more third countries to which the OECD Decision does not apply, Article 31 of the WSR shall apply. However, when a shipment of waste takes place within the Community, including shipments between localities in the same Member State, with transit via one or more third countries to which the OECD Decision applies, and the waste is destined for recovery, the consent referred to in Article 9 may be provided tacitly. Therefore, if no objection has been lodged or no conditions have been specified, the shipment may start 30-days following the transmission of the acknowledgement from the competent authority of destination.


​·         Changes in shipment after consent

If any changes are made to the details and/or conditions of a consented shipment, including quantity, route, routing, date of shipment or carriers, the notifier shall inform the competent authorities concerned and the consignee immediately and, where possible, before shipments commence.  Therefore, in order to allow sufficient processing time, ERA requires that a formal amendment request in writing (through e-mail), including all details and giving appropriate reasons, is lodged at least five full-working days prior to any planned shipments. Copies of the original amendment documents approved by ERA including accompanying documentation shall be sent to all competent authorities concerned for their information by the notifier according to Article 17 of the Regulation. Evidence of this transmission shall be forwarded to ERA in writing (through e-mail). ERA shall not be held responsible for any delays or cancellation of shipments due to late, invalid or incomplete requests.

·         Notification Expiry

A Notification shall be considered expired if:
​   §  the last date of departure included in the Notification Form has elapsed, or
   §  all waste shipments allowed under the Notification have been utilized before the expiry date, or
   §  the maximum quantity of waste allowed under the Notification is exceeded before the expiry date, or
   §  if any of the competent authorities concerned withdraw their consent.

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