Africa takes the lead in global e.waste management

Experts predict that the annual generation of e-waste will reach 74.7 million tons by 2030, which will require meeting this challenge with the concerted and coordinated efforts of all organizations and individuals across the electronics value chain, especially as manufacturers will need to develop a new approach, and take responsibility for the entire product life cycle. .

According to the International Telecommunication Union, African countries are paving the way for dealing with e-waste, and according to Global E-waste Monitor 2020, 13 countries in Africa have had e-waste policy, legislation or regulation. Their efforts could be a lesson to other countries around the world looking to improve their e-waste management systems.

Long-term solutions to e-waste management will require a fair and cost-effective approach to Extended Product Responsibility (EPR), and EPR also requires that producers – such as manufacturers, importers or distributors – take responsibility for managing the end-of-life of electronics sold in the marketplace, and this includes the recovery, recycling, and disposal of items In the end.

Experts stressed the need for regulations to contain clear and easily understandable definitions of the various stakeholders in e-waste to avoid confusion. Several African countries have introduced definitions in their regulations covering e-waste management and EPR. For example, Côte d’Ivoire, Cameroon, Ghana, Madagascar, Nigeria, Rwanda and South Africa focus on a person or people – rather than entities – in the introduction, import and manufacture of electronics. This makes it more effective to identify Who Should Register in the Linked EPR Scheme?

Ivory Coast, Cameroon, Ghana, Madagascar, Nigeria, Rwanda and South Africa all emphasize that “producers” include importers, distributors, and manufacturers of electronics, and this makes it effective to determine who should register in the associated EPR scheme.

The experts emphasized that Africa’s experience in e-waste management provides interesting approaches that all countries should consider when building an e-waste management system. Of course, continuous improvement is necessary to ensure that the e-waste management system can adapt as needed.

By Editor

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