EC single market rules force end to lead import ban

A ban on imports of lead fishing weights introduced in Britain six years ago to protect birds from lead poisoning has had to be scrapped following the establishment of the EC's single market.1

The import ban took effect in January 1987 under a statutory instrument prophetically given the number 1992. It was introduced in response to evidence that ingestion of lead weights discarded by anglers was poisoning swan populations. But the opening of the single market on 1 January meant that Britain could no longer maintain its unilateral import ban.

Swan populations should still be protected because a ban on the supply of lead weights

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