The European Commission has launched an alliance of key industry stakeholders across the full plastics value chain as part of its efforts to accelerate Europe's transition toward a circular economy. The Circular Plastics Alliance is meant to stimulate the reduction of plastics littering and increase the share of recycled plastics, while encouraging market innovation. The Alliance will in particular strengthen the match between supply and demand for recycled plastics, identified as the main obstacle to the good functioning of the EU market of recycled plastics. The Circular Plastics Alliance is part of the EU's overall goal of achieving at least 10 million tons of recycled plastics into new products on the EU market by 2025, as set in the European Strategy for Plastics.

The Circular Plastics Alliance will pursue three main operational objectives. The first objective will be to foster short-term, voluntary and co-ordinated actions and investments by key industry stakeholders. Actions and investments may cover the separate collection of plastic waste, harmonized reporting on collection and recycling rates and volumes, investments in sorting and recycling facilities, and more. The second objective will be to report on the obstacles which may hamper stakeholders' efforts to fully deliver on their commitments and to reach the target set for 2025. Finally, the third objective will be to monitor progress towards more plastics recycling and more uptake of recycled plastics in Europe.

The Commission will now invite key industry stakeholders to join the Alliance, in particular from the sectors with the greatest demand for plastics in Europe, such as the packaging, construction and automotive sectors. Other industries will also be approached in order to address the whole plastics value chain. The first meeting of the Circular Plastics Alliance will be held as part of the EU Industry Days on Feb. 5. Then, a series of operational meetings on the key topics identified by the Alliance at their first meeting will take place between March and May.

In January 2018, the European Commission adopted the first-ever Europe-wide Strategy for Plastics. Under the new plans, all plastic packaging on the EU market will be recyclable by 2030, the consumption of single-use plastics will be reduced and the intentional use of microplastics will be restricted.