Wednesday, February 1, 2023

Large volumes of world’s non-functional electronics shipped illegally into Nigeria – Study

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Ibrahim Ramalan
Ibrahim Ramalan
Ibrahim Ramalan is a graduate of Mass Communications from the Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) Zaria. With nearly a decade-long, active journalism practice, Mr Ramalan has been able to rise from a cub reporter to the exalted position of an editor; first as Arts Editor with the Blueprint Newspapers before resigning in 2019; second and presently as an Associate Editor of the Daily Nigerian online newspaper. He can be reached via [email protected], or, or @McRamalan on Twitter.
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A two-year long study carried out by the Basel Convention Coordinating Centre for Africa and the United Nations University has revealed that enormous quantities of non-functional electronic wastes are being dumped into Nigeria by world countries, especially by the EU countries.

According to the study obtained by Paul Ploumis, the author of ScrapMonster, the weak regulatory compliance frameworks at European ports results in illegal shipment of tonnes of electronic waste into the country.

He said the exports were found to have breached all export rules, it said. Much of the e-waste reaches Nigeria, without being declared.

“Instead they are mixed along with other materials of export. The lack of proper actions against illegal shippers has resulted in periodic rise in the number of such illegal shipments.

“The ports in Europe have only limited functionality testing facilities. As per estimates, nearly 60,000 metric tonnes of electronic waste reaches Nigeria every year.

“The study revealed that almost 70% of the e-waste reaching Nigeria every year was mixed with other export materials including used vehicles.

“This e-waste generally goes undeclared. A majority of the balance e-waste arrived in shipping containers. Out of this, nearly 29% originated from ports in the EU, 24% from Chinese ports and 20% from ports in the US.

“By weight, LCD televisions and flat panel monitors accounted for 18% of the imported e-waste. More than half of this waste was found to be non-functional.

“The second largest category was CRT televisions and CRT monitors, which accounted for 14% of the import market share. The other main product categories shipped illegally to the country included photocopying machines (13%), refrigerators (12%) and desktop CPUs (7%).

“The primary exporters of e-waste into the country in the EU were Germany and the UK, followed by Belgium, the Netherlands, Spain and Ireland. The top two exporting countries accounted for 40% of the total imports,” he concluded.

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