Kindly follow these instructions to determine whether any control procedures apply for the transport of a material or product from one country to another. Waste shipment controls only apply if the material or product intended for transport is waste.

Anyone planning to transport a material or product to, from or through Malta must confirm if the shipment is classified as waste. Since various countries retain different criteria it is important to check the relevant classification of each country part of the planned itinerary. In case of disagreement between the competent authorities of dispatch and destination whether the subject shall be classified as waste or non-waste, this must be considered as waste. Please refer to the Waste Framework Directive  for more information regarding waste classification.

When a material or product is confirmed as waste, its itinerary and planned treatment operation(s) have to be confirmed as legal. All shipments to, from or through EU countries must comply with the provisions of Regulation (EC) 1013/2006 on shipments of waste (WSR). Likewise, waste shipment controls outside the EU namely, the Basel Convention and the OECD Decision C(2001)107, also have to be observed.

A legal duty of care is placed upon producers, holders, carriers and importers/exporters to ensure that their waste is being handled and managed safely by authorised receivers. This obligation is also extended to include a correct waste classification, shipment via applicable controls and the environmentally sound management of the said waste.

Please follow the links below to access the lists of:

​​​EU Member States Click Here
​OECD Member States ​Click Here
​EU Member States competent authorities ​Click Here
​OECD Member States competent authorities Click Here
​Competent authorities of parties to the Basel Convention ​Click Here​

The following information is required to determine which (if any) waste shipment controls are applicable:

​​​Type of waste In the Annexes of the WSR there are three (3) different types of classification codes, each emanating from a specific legal instrument. For the purpose of determining which waste shipments control procedures apply, the classification regimes as established in the Basel Convention and the OECD Decision have to be utilised. Basel Codes start with a single letter (i.e. A4010 or B4010) while OECD Codes start with two letters (i.e. AC300). In case none of these codes apply, the waste must be deemed as ‘unlisted’ and the prior informed consent procedure applies irrespective of the nature of the waste. Waste must also be classified as hazardous or non-hazardous and depending on its origin and other properties, it is assigned a six digit European Waste Catalogue code (Commission Decision 2000/532/EC). To identify whether a waste stream is hazardous or non-hazardous, it has to be determined whether the waste displays one or more of the hazardous properties listed in Schedule 3 of the Waste Regulations (S.L.549.63). For this purpose the Safety Data Sheets (only in cases where the waste is a manufactured product whose composition has not changed) or HP criteria assessments (following sampling and analysis and possibly the identification of worst case substances) can be used to complete this assessment.
​Type of treatment ​Shipments of waste may be destined for either recovery or disposal operations as listed in the EU Waste Framework Directive (Directive 2008/98/EC). Shipments of waste for recovery are allowed in most countries subject to different waste shipment controls. However, shipments of waste for disposal are commonly more restricted. In certain cases such as plastic waste, the applicable waste controls also depend on the specific type of recovery operation intended for the waste.
​Country of destination and transit (if applicable) ​Malta has a ban for the importation of waste for disposal. Exports of waste from Malta for disposal are only allowed within EU and EFTA countries subject to the prior informed consent procedure. Waste shipments for recovery can take place within EU Member States and third countries outside the EU including non-OECD Member States. In the case of imports and exports of waste for recovery, the prior informed consent procedure applies unless the waste shipment qualifies under Article 18 controls.

Kindly refer to the guidelines below to determine whether a shipment of waste is subject to Article 18 controls:

​​Recovery in EU or OECD Member States Waste listed under a single entry in Annex III, IIIB or the mixtures of waste listed in Annex IIIA​.
​Recovery in non-OECD countries outside the EU ​Pursuant to Article 36 of the WSR an export prohibition applies for certain types of waste. Regulation (EC) No 1418/2007 of 29 November 2007 concerning the export for recovery of certain waste listed in Annex III or IIIA to the WSR establishes the controls which apply to waste listed in Annex III and IIIA to the WSR for each listed non-OECD country. If a country is not mentioned in the list, all movements of waste destined to that country are subject to the prior informed consent procedure. Nonetheless, it is highly recommended to contact the relevant competent authority before initiating this procedure.
​Shipments for laboratory analysis ​Article 18 controls apply for shipments of waste destined exclusively for laboratory analysis if 25kg are not exceeded. Kindly refer to Article 4 (5) of the WSR.
​Shipments within the Community with transit via third countries ​Further provisions for waste shipment controls for transit through third countries (non-EU Member States) are listed under Articles 31 and 32 of the WSR.

The above guidelines should assist prospective applicants to decide whether a waste shipment is prohibited, or if the prior informed consent procedure (Article 4 controls) or general information procedure (Article 18 controls) applies. Hence, anyone interested in shipping waste must be fully aware of the obligations and procedures which are relevant to the waste intended for transport. For further assistance, kindly contact the TFS Environmental Permitting team on [email protected].

The Environment and Resources Authority (ERA) reserves the right to determine the applicable waste shipment controls (if any) in case of disagreements as per WSR.

Last updated on: 28/09/2023.