Extraction of precious metals out of e-waste material is an integral and a very important part of the entire e-waste recycling chain. There are only a few companies in the world such as Umicore at Belgium, Boliden at Sweden, Xstrata in Canada, DOWA in Japan, etc. which possess the necessary technical know-how to address this requirement of e-waste recyclers globally. These companies, which have been set up with huge amounts of investment, are pre-dominantly mining companies which also perform the add-on activity of precious metal extraction for e-waste recyclers. Given their overseas locations, e-waste material is usually accumulated domestically until the volumes justify the expense involved in transporting them to these factories for extraction of precious metals.
Given the rising levels of penetration of computers and communication equipments especially in the SAARC countries, and the extent of e-waste that gets generated due to their obsolescence, there is a great scope of developing a precious metal extraction unit in India, which could cater to the local demand, as well as demand from the neighboring countries.
Ecoreco is currently working on developing a cost effective and feasible method for extraction of precious metals from e-waste.