Circular economy

Crisis of metals, prices are going to increase: recycling is convenient

Questo post è disponibile anche in: Italian

ING dossier: the increase of the demand is going to transform the market, we have to get ready for the transition towards the circular economy.

The mix of increasing extraction capacity and reduction of custom barriers has led to a significant decrease of prices in the global market of metals over the past 4 years. This determined a growth of revenues for the European technology sector, but also the crisis of the recycling sector. However, according to the new report by ING Bank (“Metals, a dangerous complacency?”), this is the right moment to transit towards a new business model that would produce long term benefits even for those who are currently saving.

The recent Growth Within dossier by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation had already underlined the potential vulnerability of Europe’s position as importer of raw materials. The ING report starts from similar premises to highlight the possible depletion of some metals, the quick growth of the demand and the volatility of oil prices: all of these elements could drastically modify the situation and cause a new increase of metal prices.

The solution suggested by ING is the circular economy: the conclusions of the report are that only this new business model will allow again great opportunities for the European economy.

“Producers should take advantage of the current situation of prices, that are the lowest in years – explains Jurjen Witteveen – to invest in strategies aimed at increasing the efficiency of the production chain. The design phase is fundamental: a cultural change towards the production of easily recyclable goods will be a huge leap towards the circular economy.”

In addition to stressing the importance of a more effective product design, the report mentions another key aspect: the transition from a business model based on property to a new model based on service providing.

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