Producer compliance scheme Repic has said that prices for surplus waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE) have now normalised, in the light of a trading agreement with Electrolink.
Repic chief executive Philip Morton said that prices had been allowed to escalate because some contractors had not understood which costs could be included in fees for producers. Repic is responsible for funding around half of all UK WEEE recycling in the household sector. It had to buy some surplus evidence from producer compliance scheme Electrolink because it did not have sufficient collection sites on its contracted network to cover all its members obligations under the WEEE Regulations.
The issue of WEEE prices has now been clarified by the Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform (BERR).
Speaking to MRW Morton said: We are delighted that we have reached an agreement. Some felt the extent of producer responsibility was unclear. As part of our discussions BERR clarified the position for those that were unclear. The WEEE regulations are very clear, only a proportion of the total costs are producer responsibility and there are other quite legitimate costs that are to be borne by other stakeholders. Designated collection facility (DCF) site costs for example are to be financed through the distributor take-back scheme. Once BERR clarified this for them it swept away many of the barriers and unrealistic price expectations. Prices for 2007 normalised and fell and continue to fall for 2008 and beyond.
DCF Cumbria Waste Managements finance director Andy Chant added: Clearly the agreement between the two parties [Repic and Electrolink] is a positive step but it has not yet resulted in Cumbria being able to recover its costs for 2007 evidence.
Cumbria has still funded all of the WEEE reprocessing since July 1 2007 without getting paid. We hope that further trading now follows allowing us to finally recover most of our costs and reduce our financial exposure. We will have to wait and see.
Image: Repic chief executive Philip Morton