Taiwan’s Environmental Protection Administration (EPA) found an insecticide illegally imported from China last year contained mirex, a substance banned by the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants, which Beijing ratified in August 2004. The finding came from EPA testing of 48 illicitly imported insecticides intercepted by customs as part of an annual survey of environmental agents, such as mosquito repellents and insecticides. Toxic and Chemical Substances Bureau (TCSB) officials told Chemical Watch that Taiwan customs had confiscated “significant amounts” of insecticides which were found to contain mirex – one of the first 12 persistent organic pollutants (POPs) to be controlled by the Convention – using various brand names in recent years. Lee Tzu-yi, a section chief in the Hazard Control Department of the TCSB told Chemical Watch that the product containing mirex was an ant-killer powder manufactured in China’s Guangdong Province and packaged under the name of “Mieyiqing”. Production, use, import and export of mirex should have been eliminated from China well over a decade ago, TCSB officials said. TCSB deputy director general Chen Shu-lin told Chemical Watch that as Taiwan is not a member of the United Nations, it cannot directly accede to the Stockholm Convention but abides by its rules voluntarily. “Therefore, we cannot raise this issue directly to the Convention,” Ms Chen said. Under Article 46 Section One of the Environmental Agents Management Act, the importer could face fines between NT$300,000 (USD $10,200) and NT$1.5 million (USD $51,100).
Chemical Watch, 19 April 2018 ; http://chemicalwatch.com