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Industry federation calls for smartphone recycling

The technology industry federation Agoria is behind a campaign to collect old smartphones for recycling that will be launched next year. In a report that appears in Monday’s edition of the daily ‘Gazet van Antwerpen’, Agoria’s Patrick Van den Bossche says that collecting old smartphones is necessary as they contain many valuable raw materials that can be recycled. These include gold, silver, palladium and cobalt.  

"The collection is necessary as there is a danger that some raw materials will become in short supply”.  

"There are a lot of smartphones lying idle in people’s draws as they are no longer used. There are around 2.5 million in this country and they contain valuable raw materials”, Mr Van den Bossche went on to say.   

"Precious metals and cobalt for example. Cobalt is needed for the production of electrically-powered vehicles. We would like to recycle these materials in order to use fewer primary resources”.   

Agoria has teamed up with a number of partners to launch a smartphone collection campaign that will get underway next year.

"It will be a challenge as there are a number of factors which mean that people don’t like to part with their old mobile phone”, Mr Van den Bossche added.

There is the economic value of the phone, but above all the emotional value.

"People often see their mobile phone as an extension of themselves. There are photos on their old phone or a text message that they treasure”.

 

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