New guidelines for transboundary movements of e-waste not adopted


June 2013

The Basel Convention lays down rules to control, at an international level, transboundary movements of wastes hazardous to human health and the environment, and their disposal particularly in developing countries. The Convention came into force on 5 May 1992.

In 2012, the Information Technology Industry Council (ITI) bid for an exemption of used or non-functioning equipment from the ban if it is ‘sent for refurbishment or repair under a valid contract with the intention of reuse to a) the producer or a third party facility acting on his behalf or b) a third party facility as long as such export does not involve exports from Annex VII countries to non-Annex VII countries.’

However, during the 11th Conference of the Parties to the Basel Convention (COP11) in Geneva, opposition to the proposal by among others the Basel Action Network (BAN) and several developing countries prevented the adoption of ITI’s request.

It was feared that the exemption would increase the amount of e-waste entering developing countries in which sufficient treatment facilities are not available.

Source: Perchards/Sagis