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[GreenYes] Thailand a waste basket for world's E-waste
From a Thai newspaper: 

> E-JUNK: Loophole in dumping law 'hurts public' 
> The Nation (Thailand) February 11, 2003
> 
> Thailand has become a waste basket for the world's electronics junk,
> with at least 100 containers of used gadgets stored at Bangkok's 
> Klong
> Toei port with no registered owners, according to a senior official
> with the Pollution Control Department (PCD). 
> 
> Sophon Tatichotphan, a director of the PCD's Hazardous Substances 
> and
> Waste Management Office, said the hi-tech garbage comprised
> second-hand products imported with the help of "some dubious Thai
> businessmen". He said these people set up legal firms in Bangkok, 
> then
> upon arrival the used electronics simply sat at the port's storage
> site while the listed importers became untraceable or declared
> bankruptcy. 
> 
> "It's a loophole in the Thai law that states that goods stored at the
> port for more than 60 days automatically become governmentproperty.
> The problem is this junk needs proper treatment to protect the
> environment and, of course, the public," he said. 
> 
> Exporting electronics waste to developing countries is a normal
> practice on the part of many foreign companies whose own national laws
> on disposal are strictly enforced to protect public health, the PCD
> official explained. "Thailand is among the countries lacking or
> failing to enforce laws to ban this dumping, so we're a target of
> these dubious businesses," Sophon said. "Worse, Thailand has yet to
> ratify the Basel Convention, which is an international treaty
> demanding that signatories ban the movement of discarded electronics
> and other hazardous wastes. If we were a member of the convention, we
> could send back the waste containers to the countries of origin and
> claim compensation."
> 
> Recent spot checks at five junk-container stations turned up old
> computers and other electronic equipment, along with old vehicle
> tyres, all of which are defined as illegal imports. "The only thing we
> can do with this stuff is send it to a treatment plant," Sophon said. 
> 
> Natural Resources and Environment Minister Prapat Panyachatraksa said
> he had ordered one of his deputy permanent secretaries to update the
> reports for him.
> 
> -end-







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