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New investment for recycling industry

Companies that can recycle plastics, including cling film and uPVC windows, are eligible for a new investment from the Scottish Government. 

13 Sep 12

The new £2.5 million loan fund offers direct financial support to organisations to develop plastics sorting and reprocessing facilities in Scotland. The fund will be administered by Zero Waste Scotland and Scottish Enterprise.

The fund builds on recent studies to identify viable business opportunities to boost plastics recycling in Scotland. It will support a range of projects covering different types of plastic products, from plastic bottles and rigid plastics like yoghurt pots to those that have traditionally been more difficult to recycle, like plastic films, uPVC window and door frames and plastics from waste electrical equipment. 

Scotland generated around 500,000 tonnes of waste plastic last year. Only around one-fifth of this was able to be recycled and most of this was sent to facilities in England or overseas. Expanding the country's capacity to recycle plastic could create hundreds of new jobs, boost Scotland's economy, and help to meet the Scottish Government's target to recycle 70 per cent of all waste by 2025.

The Waste (Scotland) Regulations, recently approved by parliament, will make sure more and more recyclable materials are collected from homes and businesses - bringing new opportunities to reprocess materials in Scotland. 

Environment Secretary Richard Lochhead said:

"With 280 million bottles collected for recycling a year, Scotland is already making progress in realising the value of waste plastic. Zero Waste Scotland's research highlights how there is potential for businesses to recycle more and different varieties of plastic. The loan fund has been set up to support businesses to take these types of ventures forward.  It is part of our drive to maximise the economic and employment benefits of recycling resources again and again, establishing a more circular economy in Scotland.

"With the price and demand for raw materials increasing globally we need to develop ways to keep high-quality materials in Scotland and reduce our dependence on raw materials from overseas. Supporting improvements to the quality and quantity of recycling options will provide the stimulus for business investment and in turn create new employment opportunities."

Zero Waste Scotland Director Iain Gulland said:

"Our £2.5 million loan fund will drive investment in plastics reprocessing in Scotland.  This is a major opportunity to harness some of the thousands of tonnes of plastic we currently waste in order to create jobs and new business opportunities."

Scottish Enterprise acting head for the Scottish Investment Bank Kerry Sharp said:

"Encouraging businesses to invest in their growth, through developing new products, opening up new markets or finding new customers, is what we do.  The Scottish Investment Bank supports this by providing companies with greater access to finance through a range of equity investments and loan funds as well as financial readiness advice to help companies access growth capital.

"Working in partnership with Zero Waste Scotland to deliver this new loan fund is a great opportunity for companies to invest in their growth, creating new jobs and investment for Scotland, as well as helping us contribute to the Scottish Government's ambitious low carbon targets.

"Our fund management and delivery experience combined with Zero Waste Scotland's knowledge and expertise are the perfect ingredients to make this new loan fund a success."

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