Repeet, Bee’ah, and Agthia Group partner to launch planned food-grade plastic recycling plant in UAE
In an MoU signed between Veolia Middle East subsidiary Repeet, environmental management group Bee’ah, and F&B conglomerate, Agthia Group, to study the feasibility of the project, the UAE plans its first food-grade plastic recycling plant to help promote circular economy and growth of sustainable industries. The partnership comes in line with The Ministry of Industry and Advanced Technology (MoIAT)’s recent ministerial decree regulating the manufacturing and trade of recycled plastic water bottles.
Under the plans, a 12,000 tons per annum polyethylene terephthalate (PET) recycling plant has been earmarked for Abu Dhabi. In line with the UAE’s efforts to reduce plastic pollution and boost trade through the export of recycled materials, the plant will recycle PET, a plastic material that is used in food packaging, such as plastic water bottles. The 40,000 square meter facility in Abu Dhabi could create 100 jobs and avoid the emission of 18,000 metric tons of CO2 annually at full operating capacity.
HE Omar Suwaina Al Suwaidi, Undersecretary at MoIAT, said: “Collaboration is the key driver behind the shift towards a more sustainable industrial sector and a greener economy. Accordingly, the ministry focuses on facilitating partnerships between stakeholders, including financial institutions, national industrial companies, and global corporations, with the aim of supporting GDP growth as well as the UAE’s net zero strategic initiative.
In the frame of the project under study, Repeet would operate the recycling plant, while BEEAH Group would supply a seven-year feedstock of plastics. Meanwhile, Agthia would provide a seven-year offtake for products. The feedstock will be post-consumed PET bottle bales while the offtakes will be food grade recycled PET resin.
Plastic pollution causes major damage to the environment and in particular ocean ecosystems. But by managing plastics effectively, countries can protect the environment while also supporting economic growth and the development of a local circular economy. The recycled plastics market is expected to grow significantly as companies pivot towards using recycled materials in their products. The market for recycled materials is expected to top $46 billion by 2025.
This partnership comes in line with MoIAT’s recent ministerial decree regulating the trade of recycled plastic water bottles. The move aims to facilitate the manufacturing of water bottles using recycled plastic in line with top public health and food safety standards. With time, more local water bottling companies are expected to embrace this circular economy journey and introduce more and more recycled plastic to produce their packaging. This is projected to reduce avoid 50,000 metric tons of CO2 emissions, to enhance the national in-country value by AED 150 million annually, and to create more than 1000 jobs.