E-waste management policy at final stage: Minister

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Tech Desk:

Posts, Telecommunications and Information Technology Minister Mustafa Jabbar on Saturday said a policy on managing e-waste was at its final stage.

“It is currently with the law ministry,” he said at a roundtable discussion on ‘E-waste management: A huge challenge for Bangladesh’ organised by Telecom Reporters’ Network Bangladesh in the city.

“The government will give much priority to the issue,” Jabbar said. “We are looking into the matter sincerely and measures will be taken for proper management.”

“E-waste can’t be reduced. Our use of electronics and digital products will increase,” the minister said. “City corporations and municipalities are now managing e-waste but after 10 years, union parishads will have to get involved in the management.”

Bangladesh produced 42,000 tonnes of e-waste last year. The mobile phone operators produced 1,000 tonnes of e-waste during the period, according to Bangladesh Mobile Phone Importers Association (BMPIA).

One of the participants at the discussion pointed out that there was no database on e-waste. Dhaka North City Corporation’s chief Waste Management Officer Md Abdur Razzak said 1,169.98 tonnes of mobile e-waste would be produced in 2021.

BMPIA President Md Ruhul Alam Mahbub said every year about 40 million mobile phones are imported.

“The people will be interested [to cooperate] if e-waste is bought at good prices. E-waste collection will soon start at five spots in the city within one month. Collection points will eventually be set up across the country,” he said.unb

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