New Year Message from Arnaud Brunet, BIR Director General
2020 is a year that we all want to forget, and while we most certainly will keep in our hearts and thoughts those who suffered from the pandemic, it is time to look ahead and decide what our future will be, with a strong determination.
We all anticipate that the first half of 2021 will not be very different from the last months of 2020 but once the various vaccines have been implemented we can hope that our life will progressively resume (a new) normality. Your organisation, BIR, has faced the strong winds of the past year, standing firmly by its members, supporting them more than ever before, reinventing its way of operating when necessary. Crises are accelerators of change and we have continued to modernise our communications tools as well as the way we engage with our members and other stakeholders. Many of these changes happened behind the curtain but they were vital to face the situation. Our organisation is fitter than ever, and even if we missed meeting you in person during our World Recycling Conventions, we were able to meet virtually and share an incredible amount of information, including highly relevant reports and data.
Of course, 2020 has been hard from a financial point of view and we sorely missed our Convention revenue. But thanks to the incredible loyalty of our members and a very tight cost control we were able to limit the financial impact and keep our investment capacity, and our finances remain solid. Also, we have not paused our advocacy missions, rather on the contrary, and BIR has been very vocal in various international fora and organisations in order to protect the interests of our members. Many of those actions were coordinated with our National Associations members, and because of – or thanks to – the pandemic, we have tightened our relations and cooperation with them.
All these strong directions will be continued and emphasized in 2021, and it is on a solid basis that we are starting this new year. The geography of recyclables is changing, becoming probably more regionalized, except for products that will be of higher quality. The call for quality that we have been supporting for some years now will more than ever be vital. BIR will continue to make sure that the voice of the global recycling industry is heard when regulators draft the rules that impact our businesses. We will offer new content and communication tools to our members so that they remain connected and informed with regards to the latest news and trends. And last but not least, we will meet again. I am confident that we will be able to have an in-person convention this year, and we at BIR are already getting prepared.
In these difficult times, rest assured that your Secretariat is working hard, more than ever, to deliver the service your need. We are grateful for the strong support we receive from our leadership, your President, your Treasurer, your Executive Committee, your Ambassadors and all the Presidents and Chairmen of our Divisions and Committees, and we are confident that we all form the best team to face the difficulties and prepare a successful year.
Last, don’t forget that you are BIR. We need you and your support, more than ever. Therefore, please renew your membership now.
Let me now sincerely wish you a very healthy, happy, successful 2021, and … see you soon!
BIR Director General