Steering Committee of the SRI Project holds the Fourth & Last Meeting

SRI SC4

As per schedule, the fourth and last meeting of the steering committee of the Sustainable Recycling Industries (SRI) Project was held on the 20th of September, 2017. The committee, which was chaired by the Ministry of Communication and Information Technology (MCIT), met to regularly monitor the progress of activities against the implementation plan.

Other objectives are to confer the pilot project for collection scheme; the media and customer experience plan, the current existing challenges of the project as well as the support provided form the different stakeholders. The meeting also aimed at getting the support of the Egyptian Parliament in lobbying for a legislative framework whereby formal e-waste management is institutionalized and sustained.  

DSC_1074At the beginning, the Director of Information Infrastructure Division at the MCIT Eng. Khaled Elattar, who moderated the meeting, gave the opening note and welcomed attendees including Dr. Mathias Schluep, the SRI Programme Director from the World Resources Forum, Mr. David Rochat, the CEO of Sofies as well as the Egyptian Member of Parliament Dr. Marianne Azer, who received a brief introduction of the project.

One of the main highlights of the Steering Committee meeting was an announcement made by Dr. Mathias Schluep, the Program Director expressing the willingness of the Swiss government to undertake a second phase of the SRI project in Egypt. Accordingly, Dr. Mathias asked all the concerned parties to develop a proposal for the second phase in addition to a formal agreement between the two countries.

From his side, Eng. Khaled El Attar, the head of SRI steering committee and the director of the Information Infrastructure division at MCIT promised to coordinate with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to develop the formal agreement for the second phase of the project. He referred as well to the high quality of SRI project in Egypt which generated good interests in the media and the parliament. Accordingly, this fosters the trust of the government to undertake a second phase of the project to maximize the results and forge the sustainable development.

Dr. Hossam Allam, SRI Project Director, has briefly referred to the numerous achievements of the SRI project. The most significant of which is the valuable partnership and cooperation with the different partners of the project MCIT, MOE and UNDP GEF Project. All the project activities were implemented in a complete harmony between all partners who shared efforts, time and budgets. Another achievement of SRI project lies in the fact that, for the first time, Egypt has a conformity solution for the e-waste. Furthermore, the project yielded accredited certified auditors for the recycling field which is extremely crucial namely for the health sector.

In addition, the project has successfully supported e-waste startups to operate formally, and they are currently registered. As for the accelerators track, the project has successfully supported three registered e-waste companies on the technical level. With regards to the take-back system, the project is currently developing an EPR tool for an effective financing mechanism.

Moreover, the meeting agenda was rich in presentations and discussion points including an outlook on the Financing Mechanism & Take-Back System by the CEO of Sofies. The Project Director, Project Coordinator, and consultants and experts from CEDARE gave a detailed update about the project’s status quo and future activities. These included baseline assessments, legislations & conformity system in Egypt. In addition, Technical Partnership, Incubation & Acceleration Programs were fully outlined by Ms. Irene Boghdadi, Chemonics.

The members stressed on the importance of including e-waste recycling in the Egyptian framework of micro, small and medium enterprises was emphasized to best serve the job creation goal.

Eng. Hoda Shakra, Technical Officer, UNDP-GEF Medical and Electronic Waste Management Project, overviewed a pilot project for collection scheme and highlighted the objectives and scope of the MOU between SRI & GEF-UNDP projects.

The Media Production & Documentation Department Manager at the MCIT demonstrated the ministry’s vision about Media and customer experience plan. Challenges & support expected from different stakeholders were broadly discussed during the meeting coming up with the following recommendations and resolutions:

  • A no-cost additional 6-month extension is approved ending in June 2018;
  • To start preparing for Phase II of the project;
  • MCIT to request the Prime Minister’s office assistance in asking governmental agencies to include accredited recyclers in tenders; and
  • Starting to develop a roadmap for establishing a national take-back system for mobile phones using Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) as a financing mechanism.