For more than 15 years UBA has been running projects on circular economy under the Advisory Assistance Programme to promote environmental protection in the countries of Central and Eastern Europe, the Caucasus and Central Asia and other countries neighbouring the European Union. These projects focus among other topics on management of Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE). The E-Waste Academy for Manager and Policy Makers was hosted by the UNIDO Centre in Moscow with support from UBA on 15 - 19 May 2017. Representatives of ministries, governmental agencies, business associations and non-governmental organizations in the CIS countries Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russian Federation and Tajikistan had the opportunity to learn about international legislation and acquire practice-based knowledge. Presentations, seminars and practical exercises helped the more than 30 participants to learn e.g. how to bring a business' management of WEEE into compliance with its country's legal requirements or how to efficiently network transboundary movements of WEEE. One of the key results of this project were the action plans on developing an environmentally sound and commercially attractive system of e-waste collection and recycling.
On 28 June 2017 the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment of the Russian Federation organized the international seminar "Russian legal framework and best European practice on waste management: possible combination of approaches to environmental protection". Together with its partner countries Germany, France and the Netherlands and EU representation, Russia's ministry invited representatives of federal and regional waste management authorities and companies to this meeting of experts to discuss current European developments and experience as well as future collaboration in the waste management sector. An UBA staff member gave a presentation on the basic principles of Germany's organization of waste management. The event took place as part of the St. Petersburg Initiative to promote cooperation in environmental matters in the Baltic Region (www.spbinitiative.ru). Talks were also held between German and Russian environmental experts to discuss future joint activities, in particular to provide advisory assistance to the regions of the Russian Federation. These regions are very interested in learning about the organization and financial aspects of waste management.
Such expert meetings, expert workshops and the concomitant bilateral talks promote more intensive cooperation between experts in the partner countries of the Advisory Assistance Programme and the exchange of knowledge and experience.