Adopting the Swiss model: CEDARE conducts TOT on E-waste Recycling Conformity Assessment under SRI

The trainees were from governmental bodies; namely, the Waste Management Regulatory Authority (WMRA), the Egyptian Environmental Affairs Agency (EEAA), the Industrial Development Authority (IDA), in addition to private sector entities and independent environmental consultants. The trained auditors will audit e-waste recyclers, inspect all technical procedures and assess e-waste recyclers’ conformity to the Egyptian accredited system. Additionally, the trainees will be eligible to train others and transfer the knowledge to a wider base of auditors through similar training programs.

Dr. Hossam Allam, CEDARE’s Sustainable Growth Programme’s (SGP) Regional Director and Director of SRI program in Egypt, stated that “Preparing a professional cadre of technical auditors in this vital sector is imperative, as Egypt generates annually an average of 4-5 kg. of e-waste per person, which represent an urban mining source of precious metals with significant economic value. E- waste sound management requires a solid system and methodology for safe disposal of their hazardous components. Consequently this fact in addition to the digitalization presidential initiative, the Egyptian government is currently directing tremendous efforts towards managing sustainable management of e-waste and converting informal recyclers into the recycling formal sector.” He added, “It is thus far planned that WMRA will be the official e-waste recyclers’ accreditation body after transferring the Swiss state-of-art expertise”.

The TOT varied between virtual and physical sessions and covered the environmental and health requirements for recycling phases, as well as modules on waste resulting from Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE). It also included the auditing system set-up, monitoring procedures, protocols, guidelines, reporting, application codes, and compliance schemes. It involved study tours to recycling plants and a hands-on integrated pilot audit too.

In line with Egypt’s Vision 2023, this training is part of the Egyptian government’s efforts to standardize the management of the e-waste recycling industry and turn it into a sustainable industry reinforcing circular economy, in collaboration with the Swiss partners specialized in this field.

Funded by the Swiss government represented by the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO), SRI started its activities in Egypt in 2016 and is implemented by CEDARE in partnership with the Egyptian Ministry of Communications and Information Technology (MCIT) and Ministry of Environment, and the World Resources Forum (WRF), EMPA, and DSS from Switzerland with the support of the Embassy of Switzerland in Egypt aiming to transfer the Swiss solid expertise in this field to Egypt.