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UNIDO Attends Private Sector Led African E-Waste Conference

UNIDO13 June 2013: The UN Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) has announced it participated in the E-Waste and Refurbishment Standards Conference, which convened in Cape Town, South Africa, on 7 June. The aim of the event was to accelerate efforts to address African e-waste problems in an environmentally sound manner, protects workers' health, and also generates economic opportunity.

The Conference was sponsored by Microsoft and organized by TechSoup Global, TechSoup Africa, WorldLoop, and Mico E-Waste Solutions. Participants from UNIDO, Dell, Hewlett-Packard, Lenovo/IBM, the e-Waste Association of South Africa (eWASA), the e-Waste Alliance, Sims Recycling Solutions Africa, and R2 Solutions, as well as the heads of e-waste recyclers and refurbishment companies from 10 African countries. The meeting discussed emerging electronics recycling standards and how they are applicable to the African electronics recycling and refurbishment industries.

According to UNIDO, discussions focused on: the best ways to engage African governments, the largest generators of discarded computer, and to encourage them to make better use of the emerging electronics and refurbishment industry; how to integrate the already large informal recycling sector in Africa in ways that provide income and also ensure both the personal health of workers and the safety of the environment; and ways to expand the work of the e-Waste Association of South Africa and South Africa's e-Waste Alliance to the rest of the continent. [UNIDO Press Release] [Techsoup Website]