ITC study reignites e-cycling exports debate

Mar 22, 2013 | 03:37 PM | Sean Davidson

Tags  e-cycling, Basel Action Network, Electronics TakeBack Coalition, ISRI, Jim Puckett, Robin Wiener, scrap, Sean Davidson

NEW YORK — Industry groups remain divided on the results of a large study examining used electronics products (UEPs) exports.
For years, certain sectors in the industry have claimed that the United States exports about 80 percent of its used electronics; others say that number is much lower. A new study released by the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) puts the number at around 17 percent, consequently triggering a fresh debate over the study’s methodology.

Still, opposing groups have found common ground when it comes to tackling the exports of certain materials.

U.S. entities reported $20.6 billion in total sales of UEPs in 2011, which included exports of $1.45 billion, or 7 percent of total sales, according to the ITC study, which was based on a 2012 survey of 5,200 market participants.

The study also provided other data points on an industry short on real figures and statistics.
Refurbished electronics accounted for the majority of U.S. domestic sales in 2011 at $15 billion, with domestic sales of disassembled or recycled electronics coming in at $4.3 billion, according to the study. ....

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