European Commission - Press release
Free movement of goods: Slovakia to comply with EU rules on circulation of waste for recovery
Brussels 29 September 2011: The European Commission has today requested Slovakia to change its waste legislation in order to comply with EU rules on the free movement of goods. The present Slovakian legislation requires that hazardous waste arising in the Slovak Republic should preferably be recovered within the country. Due to this provision, permissions to export waste to other member States were systematically denied. The Commission considers that this requirement violates EU rules on the free movement of goods.
On the basis on the reasoned opinion issued today Slovakia has two months to inform the Commission on the possible measures to be taken to ensure the compliance with EU law in order to avoid to be referred to the EU's Court of Justice.
Waste for recovery should be free to circulate within the EU market without restrictions. Therefore, the Commission considers the provision of Waste Act in breach of Article 35 TFEU, which prohibit quantitative restrictions on exports or measures having an equivalent effect. By now Slovakia did not justify this requirement on the basis of a legitimate ground, such as environmental protection.