Half of Global WEEE to be Produced in Asia-Pacific Region by 2025

BIR Committee: Ambitious Plans to Tackle India’s Growing E-Waste Mountain

Interested parties have until May 2018 to digest its contents of the Bureau of International Recycling E-Scrap Committee’s meta study of reliable generation and flow data ahead of a full discussion in Barcelona.

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Interested parties have until May 2018 to digest its contents of the Bureau of International Recycling E-Scrap Committee’s meta study of reliable generation and flow data ahead of a full discussion in Barcelona.

Speaking at the latest gathering in New Delhi recently, BIR’s E-Scrap Committee Chairman Thomas Papageorgiou of Greece-based Anamet SA explained that the study includes a summary of per capita e-scrap production around the world and forecasts of the situation in the year 2025.

He said that from the study it is evident that more than half of the world’s e-scrap will arise in the Asia-Pacific region, and that flows of e-scrap in different parts of the world are “the most difficult part of the study”.

One of the countries anticipating a sharp increase in e-waste generation is India, the venue for the latest BIR Convention. The E-Scrap Committee’s guest speaker B. K. Soni, Chairman and Managing Director of e-waste management specialist Ecoreco, indicated that 3.2 million tonnes is generated annually in India but that a United Nations report forecasts a figure of 20 million tonnes for the year 2020. Around 98% is currently dismantled within the so-called “unorganised” sector in ways that are harmful to health and the environment, he pointed out.

In response, the Indian government is backing an “ambitious” scheme to train 300,000 scrap dealers nationwide over a 10-year period through a network of training centres. “Heavy” investment is still needed in, for example, establishing more collection centres and putting technology in place, Mr Soni added.

Regarding latest market developments, stricter customs controls have meant that the cost of bringing scrap into China is “as high as US$ 10,000 per container”, it was reported by Dr Steve Wong, Executive President of the China Scrap Plastics Association.

In a market update read out in his absence by BIR Plastics Committee Chairman Surendra Borad Patawari of Gemini Corporation, Dr Wong added: “WEEE scrap plastic recyclers have no choice but to either close down their operations or move to South East Asian countries to continue their businesses.”

Papageorgiou added that the impact of the new Chinese import policy is also being felt in Europe and that China is not alone in implementing rules that hinder trade, pointing out that the government of Serbia has recently decided to channel export applications through a special committee for approval or otherwise.

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