Care Centers - EoL in Asia

"In Care Centres we take care of our customers and the environment," says Ian Broughall who is responsible for Nokia Mobile Phones' environmental issues in the Asia-Pacific region. The recycling project was started in Singapore in February 2000 and the pilot was carried out in June-July. "We did not get too many devices or accessories back, mainly some batteries," explains Ian. "The main reason was simply the low awareness of people.

Now Ian has a recycling partner in the Singapore Zoo. Pedro, an otter sponsored by Nokia, is giving recycling shows every night and at the same time people are told about the environment and recycling. "You have to be creative when you try to increase awareness. In Singapore the zoo thing works, in other countries you can find different ways to make people think." Pedro is part of the recycling campaign 'Future in your hands' which encourages people to return their EoL devices and accessories to care centres from where the recycling partner takes them to be recycled or disposed of safely.

The recycling schemes will be rolled out in Asia-Pacific region by the end of the year 2001. Some of the countries where recycling will start this year include Malaysia, Hong Kong and Philippines. In Australia, Nokia participates in the recycling program of AMTA, an organization for manufacturers and operators.

Malaysia is one of the pilot countries along with Singapore for recycling mobile phones in Asia. "We are looking for ways to raise people's interest in returning phones to care centres," confirms administrative secretary Nellie Abdullah. "Phones are precious equipment and people prefer keeping them to bringing them in for recycling."

Ian notes that the overall experience from the pilot in Singapore has been positive. Recycling has brought a competitive advantage and good publicity and the response from people has been positive. On an encouraging notes he adds; "Recycling is a serious business but it should be also fun, at least when communicating on it."