Regulations supporting tyre product stewardship

The regulations will support product stewardship of tyres. They come into force from 1 March 2024. 

Official title

Waste Minimisation (Tyres) Regulations 2023

Lead agency

Ministry for the Environment

Full text

In force from

1 March 2024

However the following provisions come into force on 1 September 2024:

  • Regulation 6(1)(b) to (e) and (2)
  • Regulation 7.

What the regulations do

The regulations support an accredited priority product stewardship scheme for tyres known as Tyrewise.

The aim of Tyrewise is to:

  • provide a free, convenient and accessible take-back service for end-of-life tyres across Aotearoa New Zealand
  • improve the rate of re-use, recycling and re-purposing of end-of-life tyres in Aotearoa
  • reduce the number of tyres entering landfill and illegal dumping through a free tyre take-back service
  • provide incentive payments for more sustainable domestic uses of end-of-life tyres
  • provide funding for innovation and market development.

The Tyrewise scheme was developed by a stakeholder working group and accredited in late 2020. The accreditation is held by Auto Stewardship New Zealand (ASNZ), a not-for-profit product stewardship organisation.

The scheme is currently going through a re-accreditation process to align with the new regulations and feedback from key industry stakeholders and ASNZ. Re-accreditation will be complete before phase one of the regulations come into force and collection of the tyre stewardship fee begins on 1 March 2024. 

When the regulations come into effect

They come into effect in two phases.

Phase 1 (referred to as Tranche 1 in the regulations)

From 1 March 2024, tyres must be sold in accordance with the accredited tyre scheme.

A tyre stewardship fee will be collected on all tyres covered by the scheme when they enter the Aotearoa New Zealand market to fund the scheme.

Phase 2 (referred to as Tranche 2 in the regulations) 

From 1 September 2024, the scheme will begin full operations.

Participants will receive payments for the services they provide to the scheme that involve end-of-life tyre movements such as for the take-back service (eg, collection and transportation).

Incentive payments will be available to support the recovery of raw materials found in end-of-life tyres.

Phase two will also enable the scheme manager to set targets for the take-back service.

Reasons for the regulations

Currently, the costs of end-of-life tyres largely fall on communities, local government, and the environment.

A regulated product stewardship tyre scheme ensures that producers take responsibility to minimise the waste and harm caused by tyres at the end of their usual useful life.

Regulated product stewardship is part of the government’s comprehensive waste minimisation work programme. It supports the goal of moving to a low-carbon circular economy.

Further background information on the regulations is in the 2021 consultation document [PDF 1.4 KB]

Who is affected by the regulations

Tyre importers must pay the fee on regulated tyres 

The regulations prohibit the sale of regulated tyres except in accordance with the accredited scheme.

From 1 March 2024, the fee must be paid by: 

  • importers of loose regulated tyres  
  • importers of off-road motor vehicles and aircraft that have regulated tyres attached to them 
  • a person that registers a motor vehicle (with regulated tyres attached to it) that has not previously been registered 
  • a person that manufactures a loose regulated tyre that is then sold in New Zealand (tyres that are re-treaded in New Zealand are not manufactured in New Zealand for the purposes of these regulations). 

Members of the public (tyre owners) 

From September 2024, members of the public will be able to take their end-of-life tyres to registered collection sites (eg, a mechanic, tyre retailer or community collection site) to be managed at no cost to them through the scheme. However only tyres that have had a fee paid by liable parties will be accepted by the scheme  

The tyre stewardship fee may be passed onto consumers, replacing the existing ad-hoc tyre collection fees often charged by tyre retailers to their customers for the collection and disposal of end-of-life tyres.

Because they were not regulated, these ad-hoc fees did not guarantee the safe disposal of end-of-life tyres. In contrast, the tyre stewardship fee allows a transparent chain of custody for all disposed and transformed tyres.  

All businesses and individuals who participate in the tyre market  

From 1 March 2024, businesses and individuals who participate in the tyre market must register with the scheme by visiting the Tyrewise website and complying with the scheme’s guidelines.  

Registered participants in the Tyrewise scheme will help the scheme manager to achieve their targets by providing services for the management of end-of-life tyres and following the scheme’s guidelines.  

Take-back service operators and tyre processors 

Operators of end-of-life tyre collection, transportation, and processing services will enter into agreements with the scheme to provide their services for the sustainable management of end-of-life tyres. The scheme manager will report on the scheme’s performance to the Ministry.  

Tyrewise will pay service fees to tyre collectors, transporters, and manufacturers, and incentive payments to tyre processors for domestic uses. The types of activities eligible for incentive payments are set in regulations. No incentive payments will be offered for exported tyre products.  

About the tyre fee

The regulations:

  • set the fees
  • specify who pays the fee
  • specify when the fee must be paid.

The tyres that must have a tyre stewardship fee paid and the rate of the fee are described in the regulations [New Zealand Legislation website]. 

The fee varies depending on the type (and size) of tyre. It replaces the collection and disposal fees charged by many tyre retailers.

Paying the fee

The fee must be paid as per the following:

  • A person that registers a motor vehicle (with  regulated tyres attached to it) will pay the fee to the New Zealand Transport Agency - Waka Kotahi when the motor vehicle is first registered
  • Importers of loose regulated tyres, off-road motor vehicles, or aircraft, and manufacturers of loose regulated tyres in Aotearoa, will pay the fee directly to the Ministry for the Environment when:
    • a loose regulated tyre, off-road motor vehicle, or aircraft is imported; or
    • a loose regulated tyre manufactured in Aotearoa is first sold.

Refer to Schedule 2 - Fees for regulated tyres [NZ Legislation website]

Refer to Paying the fee for details on how the fee will be collected

How the fee is set

The fee is set as follows:

  • The rate of the fee is based on a standard measure called the Equivalent Passenger Unit (EPU). An EPU is equivalent to the weight of a ‘typical’ passenger tyre (9.5kg of tyre).
  • Loose regulated tyres are identified and categorised by their tariff item. Tyres have a set fee value based upon the EPU of that tyre. Working Tariff Document of Aotearoa Section VII, Chapters 39 - 40: Plastics and articles thereof; rubber and articles thereof (PDF, 473 KB) [New Zealand Customs Service website]. 
  • Tyres attached to vehicles are identified by motor vehicle class or vehicle type in Waka Kotahi New Zealand Transport Agency’s vehicle registration systems, or by the vehicle weight.
  • The fee on tyres manufactured onshore and sold in New Zealand is calculated using the formula: f = ( w / 9.5 ) x $6.65, where:
    • w is the weight of tyres (kg)
    • 9.5 is the value representing the Equivalent Passenger Unit (EPU) standard measure of a new passenger tyre.

Further information

Tyrewise:

Contact Tyrewise if you have questions about the tyre product stewardship scheme operations, governance, or scheme participant requirements.

Product Stewardship Team

Contact the Ministry’s Product Stewardship Team if you have questions on the tyre product stewardship regulations and the tyre fee.