Following in the footsteps of the UAE and Saudi Arabia, Egypt has recently launched an application to incite people to recycle their electronic appliances.
E-Tadweer, the app launched in collaboration with the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology, aims at helping Egyptians decrease their use of electronic devices and safely dispose of them once they malfunction.
The more they use the app and provide the designated recycling factories with their electronic gadgets, the more discount vouchers from collaborating retail companies they receive. The latter move was added to encourage individuals to mindfully dispose of their e-waste while guaranteeing a deduction from the price of their next electronic purchase.
Yasmine Fouad, the country's environment minister, confirmed that the government granted seven factories the proper license to go ahead with the safe recycling of electronic waste, according to Arab News.
Egypt produces close to 88,000 tons of e-waste annually. With over 97.5 million residents, 94 million are mobile phone subscribers, 13.82 million households are computer owners, and 23.54 million households are television owners. These are only three examples of the hundreds of electronic devices that exist and are in use daily around the world.
According to Egypt Today, Egyptians will not dispose of old computers, mobile phones, or tablets in trash cans under the new system.
The North African country will be leading campaigns to raise awareness among people regarding the safe disposal of such appliances and the dangers of irresponsibly discarding them.
In 2016, Egypt's Ministry of Communications and the Swiss Embassy signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) "to support the integration of small- and medium-scale companies in recycling electronic waste in Egypt. It was agreed to extend the duration of the project from 2020 to 2023."
Based on that MoU, the country's Minister of Communications and Information Technology Amr Talaat discussed with Fouad and Paul Garnier, the Swiss Ambassador to Egypt, the different ways sustainable recycling projects in Egypt can be pushed forward.
In addition to creating and facilitating an environment-friendly process to get rid of e-waste, Talaat said such projects will create job opportunities for people in the electronic waste treatment field.
As for the Swiss Embassy, it will be responsible for the provision of technical support in safely managing e-waste.
The Ministry of Environment will be working in parallel on plans to safely dispose of other types of waste including agriculture leftovers, solid waste, and medical waste.
"The ministry is keen on launching awareness campaigns to raise public awareness, and provide them with alternatives," Fouad said.
The ministry had also previously announced its intentions towards closing unsafe landfills in Cairo and Giza to shift them into public service facilities.