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Copper exports from SVG banned

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The export of copper from St Vincent and the Grenadines has been banned, except where special permission is given.{{more}}

According to the Customs (Restriction of Exportation) Order 2012, which was gazetted on August 14, 2012, “the exportation from the State of copper is prohibited, except with the permission of, and subject to such conditions as may be imposed by the Minister responsible for trade or an authorised person”.

Godfred Pompey, Permanent Secretary in the Prime Minister’s Office, told SEARCHLIGHT on Tuesday that Cabinet appointed a committee to make recommendations generally, in relation to the exportation of scrap metal, and copper was the first metal to be dealt with.

When exporters apply for permission to export copper, Pompey said, a team, including someone from the Customs Department, will inspect the material to be exported, to determine the source of the metal and legitimizaton of ownership, among other things.

Pompey said the Committee, of which he is Chairman, is also considering other measures for the regulation of the export of scrap metal in general.

In 2011, St Vincent and the Grenadines exported 3.663 million kilograms of scrap metal, valued at EC$1.946 million. Of that, over 13,000 kilograms was copper, which was exported at a value of EC$238,000.

Other Caribbean countries, including Antigua and Barbuda and Jamaica, have recently placed restrictions on the export of copper, following an increase in reports of theft of copper and vandalization of equipment known to contain copper wire.

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