Rules on electrical waste must minimise red tape and be implemented without further delay.
This is the view of the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) which was responding to the launch of the final consultation on the European Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) directive.
CBI director of environment Michael Roberts said: This directive was meant to be implemented in August 2005. Delays and missed deadlines have left many businesses unable to commit to the investment needed to deal with this waste, so a clear implementation date is a vital step.
The July 2007 date is achievable, but only if the process works more smoothly than in the past. There is a key job for Government in harnessing the efforts of all the players involved- manufacturers, retailers, recyclers, local authorities and the Environment Agency.
Under the WEEE directive, businesses are required to pay for the cost of collecting and disposing of used electrical goods, with a Department of Trade and Industry investigation in 2004 revealing that this would cost between £300 million and £450 million.
Roberts added: The procedures, such as registration of manufacturers, must be straightforward with a minimum of administrative effort.
All businesses affected must be clearly informed of their responsibilities, and enforcement must be fair and proportionate. We will need to examine todays proposals in detail to see how far they meet these tests.