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Turkish asbestos ban goes into effect

February 17th, 2011

An asbestos ban that was announced months ago by the government of Turkey went into effect on January 1st, 2011. Turkish authorities announced the ban in August 2010, which will outlaw the production, use and supply of asbestos and asbestos-containing products in that country.

Turkey’s move to completely ban asbestos will bring the country into full compliance with European Union legislation, which calls for the total prohibition of asbestos products in member nations. Turkey had previously placed a partial ban on the use of asbestos within the country.

Asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral that was widely used in industrial and construction applications during the 20th century due to its fire- and heat-resistant properties. The use of asbestos-containing products declined significantly after the 1970s, when the link between asbestos exposure and diseases such as mesothelioma, asbestosis and certain cancers became more widely known.

It is unclear what effect Turkey’s asbestos ban will have on the sale and production of asbestos products from other nations. Prior to its decision to outlaw asbestos use, Turkey had been a major purchaser of asbestos materials from Canada, home to some of the world’s largest asbestos mines.

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