Posted on 22/05/2015 in category Convention

Recent BIR World Recycling Convention & Exhibition in Dubai

(18-20 May 2015)

General Assembly: New BIR President sets sights on more recognition for recyclers

New BIR World President Ranjit Singh Baxi of UK-based J & H Sales International has put increased recognition and respect for the recycling industry’s environmental contribution at the top of the priority list for his period in office.

Immediately following his election to the post at the BIR’s Annual General Meeting (AGM) on May 19 in Dubai, he said the recycling industry had been responsible for some 10bn tonnes of carbon emission savings since the turn of the Millennium and yet was not part of climate change discussions. “With your support,” he told delegates, “I would like to change this.”

Mr Baxi, who is also Honorary President of the BIR Paper Division and will remain BIR Treasurer for several more months, spoke of his desire to boost the industry’s profile through the creation of a Global Recycling Day and called for recyclers to work together to ensure controls on movements of recyclables were reduced to a minimum.

It would be a “difficult and challenging task”, said Mr Baxi, to maintain the standards set by his predecessor as BIR World President, going on to praise Björn Grufman of MV Metallvärden AB in Sweden for his “invaluable contributions” to the industry and to the recycling cause during what had been “a difficult period”.

In his parting address, Mr Grufman warned recyclers of the need to develop or die. He stated: “We have already developed so much over many years and today’s recycling facilities are more industrialised and high-tech than many of their primary material counterparts. But we must aim to become even better. With fewer impurities and with less energy consumption, we must be able to process our recycled raw material to a point that is as good as, or even better than, primary material. Buyers must be given good reason to choose our recycled raw materials over primary raw materials.”

It was the role of BIR, he added, to guide decision-makers and the recycling industry “along the path towards the sustainable society of the future”.

It was also confirmed at the AGM that, despite the difficult economic environment mentioned by Mr Baxi, the BIR had succeeded in attracting 76 new members over the previous 12 months, including the Bureau of Middle East Recycling.

Immediately prior to the AGM, delegates were treated to a deeply insightful analysis of the Arab world by a renowned regional expert, namely political columnist and author Rami Khouri. It was his contention that the Arab world found itself at a “truly historic, unprecedented moment of change”, characterised by “great stresses” and by unresolved relationships between, for example, military and civilian authorities as well as the religious and the secular.

He believed that the yearning of the vast majority for “stability and concord” would lead “soon” to a transition to more constitutional change and that many were optimistic of an end to the region’s current “outdated system”. And he added: “The process of change has started. We shouldn’t be discouraged by the low point we are in at the moment.”