Customs in Thailand recently found that waste imported into Thailand was not declared properly, usually as a recyclable type, when in reality it was bound for waste disposal. The Thai Police also found that a number of recipients of such waste, which were said to be recycling facilities, do not have such capability.
As Gard reports, there is currently suspension of all waste imports into Thailand, including waste that is otherwise permitted for recycling. Moreover, containers in transit are also included in the suspension.
Boundary movement of hazardous waste is governed by the Basel Convention that also applies in Thailand. The Convention allows certain types of waste to be imported into Thailand legitimately. These are recyclable types of waste, in general, but does not include lower quality waste bound for deposit.
Because of the large volume of waste, and the difficult of checking each shipment or container, Thailand decided to temporarily suspend all imports of waste. This means that otherwise legitimate shipments, even in transit, may not be allowed to discharge at a Thai port in the near future.
As of now it is not known when Thai authorities will lift the ban on discharge of waste.