ASEAN Working Group on Chemicals and Waste (AWGCW)

Participants of the 3rd Meeting of the ASEAN Working Group on Chemicals and Waste (AWGCW) on 2 May 2018 in Putrajaya, Malaysia. [Regional Resource Centre for Asia and the Pacific]

The ASEAN Working Group on Chemicals and Waste (AWGCW), formerly known until 2015 as the ASEAN Working Group on Multilateral Environmental Agreements (AWGMEA), is a consultative platform among ASEAN Member States to strengthen regional coordination and cooperation in addressing chemicals-related issues under relevant multilateral environmental agreements such as the Basel Convention, Rotterdam Convention, Stockholm Convention, and Minamata Convention, as well as internationally agreed-upon systems such as the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals (GHS), the 2020 Goal of Strategic Approach to International Chemicals Management (SAICM) and the UN 2030 Sustainable Development Goals. The AWGCW's name was endorsed by ASEAN Senior Officials on the Environment (ASOEN) at its 26th meeting in September 2015, with the Terms of Reference later revised in accordance with the ASEAN Community's Post-2015 Vision.
Focal Office:
Environmental Management Bureau (EMB)
First meeting 17-18 May 1999 as ASEAN Working Group on Multilateral Environmental Agreements (AWGMEA)
Focal Persons:
Technical Representative 
       Chief, Environmental Quality Division
       DENR - Environmental Management Bureau
       Tel. Nos. - (632) 928 8863
The scope of collaboration through the AGWCW are in the following areas:
- Policy and strategy formulation and implementation through development of an Action Plan to facilitate regional coordination to support the implementation of and compliance with international chemicals-related conventions and agreements;
- Knowledge and experience sharing on the activities related to the management of the transboundary movement of chemical substances, and chemical wastes management in accordance with relevant international agreements;
- Institutional and human capacity building for ASEAN Member States (AMS) in relation to the management of the transboundary movement of hazardous chemical substances, and chemical waste management;
- Joint research on chemicals and hazardous waste management; and
- Coordination and collaboration among AMS and among various relevant ASEAN sectoral bodies and dialogue partners to ensure a well-coordinated and integrated approach to promoting activities related to the transboundary movement of hazardous chemical substances and chemical waste management.
The action plans for 2016-2025 under the ASEAN Strategic Plan of Action on the Environment (ASPEN) are:
- Management of hazardous waste and other waste defined under the Basel Convention;
- Strengthening the cooperation on transboundary movements of hazardous chemical and hazardous waste;
- Sound chemicals management;
- Promotion of environmentally sound technologies towards Green Industries.
- Ensuring ASEAN presence in the global community;
- Chemicals and hazardous wastes accident prevention, preparedness and emergency responses; and
- Remediation of contaminated sites from chemicals and hazardous wastes.
Sources / Relevant Links:


In 2016, the ASEAN and UNEP International Environmental Technology Centre (UNEP-IETC) conducted joint studies on general waste management, electronic waste (e-waste) management and a mercury waste inventory. The Asian Institute of Technology (AIT) in Thailand conducted the studies on general waste management and mercury waste inventory while the e-waste study was conducted by the Basel Convention Resource Centre-Southeast Asia (BCRC-SEA) in Indonesia.
On 26 April 2017 the ASEAN Meeting of Ministers on the Environment (AMME) adopted the ASEAN Joint Declaration on Hazardous Chemicals and Waste Management to articulate ASEAN's concern and commitment to addressing hazardous chemicals and waste management issues in the region.
This Page was updated on 17 December 2019 and will be updated on 10 December 2020
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