UK electronics industry shocked by illegal electronic waste findings

The findings on a new report that that tracked shipments from 10 European countries over two years have shocked the industry. The UK has been found to be the worst offender in Europe for illegally exporting toxic electronic waste to developing countries.

The investigation, carried out by the environmental watchdog the Basel Action Network (BAN) used GPS trackers to track equipment to its end destinations. Equipment such as monitors and computers was tracked to Ghana, Nigeria, Pakistan, Tanzania, Thailand and Ukraine.

The UK electronics industry will no doubt be shocked and disappointed to discover that the UK came top of the list of suspected illegal shipments. BAN has estimated that over 350,000 metric tonnes of electronic waste could be illegally being shipped from the EU each year.

Jim Puckett, director of BAN said, these illegal shipments perpetuate an EU waste management regime that’s built “on the backs of the poor and vulnerable.”

The UK Environment Agency has responded by saying that while it takes these matters seriously – as it should – the challenge is vast.


At UK Electronics we recycle all our out-dated electrical equipment and scrap circuit boards under the WEEE directive (Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment).

You can find out about our environmental impact here.

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