The ICT agreement should also ensure sustainable electronics

The Dutch government is launching an initiative for standard electronic devices such as laptops and smartphones. For this purpose, the Netherlands signs a communications agreement, which will co-operate with Belgium. Other European countries are also participating. The agreement aims to “ensure a transparent production process in which workers’ rights are protected.”

According to Stentge von Veldovan, Secretary of State for Infrastructure and Water Management, the electronics sector accounts for more than 2 percent of global CO2 emissions and has a short lifespan. That must change, he writes. For example, iPhones are only used for a year and a half, while they contain many rare ingredients.

In addition to the Netherlands and Belgium, Germany, Norway, the United Kingdom, Austria and Switzerland have also signed the treaty. Links with other countries such as Canada are being discussed. In the future, both countries and companies purchasing ICT products will be able to sign the agreement.

Fixed purchase

According to Van Veldovan, the deal allows buyers to show a need for circular ICD products. This should motivate manufacturers to make products truly circular, and can accelerate growth towards these types of things, writes the Secretary of State.

Through this agreement, the signatories are committed to consistently purchasing ICT products. It should create an international network of knowledge, which the Secretary of State hopes will help it stand strong against the biggest and most powerful manufacturers in general. According to Van Veldovan, this will make it easier for consumers to choose a standard phone or tablet.

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