China’s new rules raise barriers to contaminants in waste imports, and U.S. recycling collectors would have to upgrade their equipment and hire more workers to meet the tougher standards. China's Ministry of Ecology and Environment (MEE) announced April 19, 2018, that China will ban imports of 32 types of scrap materials (which the MEE labels as “solid waste”).. Sixteen materials, including scrap metals considered “Category 7” such as motors and wire and cable scrap, will be banned from import beginning Dec. 31, 2018, MEE says in an online announcement (in Chinese). The initial 2017 ban on 24 types of imported waste, including plastic and paper, was extended at the end of 2018 to 16 new products, including scrap ships and automobile parts. Dozens of laborers and factory operators sit hand-cuffed in rows on the pavement at an industrial park in Malaysia. China Isn't Recycling Tons Of U.S. China plans to phase in bans on most other rubbish, of which it imports $24bn-worth a year. Plastic Trash Anymore : Goats and Soda Last year, China drastically cut back its imports of plastic waste to recycle.