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Govt backs e-waste recyclers
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A senior environment official on Friday pledged more government support for efforts to develop the nation's fledgling e-waste recycling industry.

Li Jing, an environment official with the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC), told an e-waste treatment forum in Beijing hosted by Fuji Xerox (China) that the sector is currently unable to compete with the large number of individual e-waste collectors.

But she said she believed that with the peak of electronic product disposal approaching, the heightening of public awareness of environmental protection and the establishment of a comprehensive e-waste treatment industry, this situation would be resolved.

And she said that the government would work out more measures, such as preferential tax policies and the allocation of treasury bonds, to encourage the development of the industry.

The government has chosen Beijing, Tianjin, Qingdao in Shandong Province and Hangzhou in Zhejiang Province as pilot cities to run e-waste treatment plants, which have its support in terms of tax, funds and technology.

In recent years, as a result of the development of the circular economy and the soaring price of raw materials, many enterprises have taken up e-waste recycling, such as Fuji Xerox.

The Japan-based high-tech company will have an integrated material recycling system up and running next year at its plant in Suzhou, East China's Jiangsu Province.

In the system, the company can realize zero landfill, no pollution and no illegal disposal after the treatment of scrap equipment, according to Yuji Otake, president of Fuji Xerox Eco-Manufacturing (Suzhou) Co Ltd.

Li Jing said China welcomed the introduction of such e-waste treatment technology, which will help alleviate pressures in this regard.

Li Xiangnong, an official from the State Environmental Protection Administration, said that the Chinese people currently owned a total of 1.2 billion of televisions, air conditioners, washing machines, refrigerators and computers. Every year, about 50 million of these are disposed, resulting in 1.2 million tons of waste.

(China Daily November 12, 2007)

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