Precious metal and hazardous waste specialists Betts Environmental have called for the end of exports for precious metals.
Instead, it wants to see these resources recovered in the UK to ensure that there is an adequate supply for UK needs.
Betts Environmental general manager Simon Hundal said: “The UK has both the infrastructure and expertise to recover precious metals and return them to the national supply chain, yet businesses continue to export these valuable materials to the Far East through ease, ignorance or both.
“Not only does this represent a huge financial loss to the British economy, but companies are also missing out on a significant revenue stream because they are simply not aware of the value of their waste.
“The problem lies with the current requirements of WEEE legislation, which dictates disposal down to a dedicated route, but does not require the recovery and recycling of materials. The value chain is therefore open to abuse, with export companies reclassifying waste materials as products to avoid any further controls.
“Betts Environmental is calling on UK Government to redress what it sees as an irresponsible loss of resources, and to improve British competitiveness through the national recovery of precious metals.”