The European Commission has lent its support to steps Austria is planning to make to ensure a stringent application of EEC Directive 94/62 on packaging and waste. Article 6 of the Directive sets target figures for the Member States to reach for recovery and recycling of packaging waste. It is proposed that by June 30, 2001 at the latest, somewhere between a minimum 50% and maximum 65% by weight of all packaging materials shall be recycled, with a minimum of 15% by weight for each packaging material chosen. As provided for in the Directive, the Austrian authorities notified the Commission of their plan to exceed the targets, specifying that as early as 1994, Austria had managed to exceed the maximum aim the Directive set for recycling, and therefore sought Commission approval for a more stringent application of the Community Directive.

The Commission asked for and received additional information about the aims being sought by Austria, in particular on the level of recycling and processing capacities available along with steps taken to...

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