ETIRA shocked that Ninestar is found engaged in forced labor, asks EU regulators to act

June 12, 2023

As of 12 June 2023, the US bans all imports of Ninestar products under their Uyghur Forced Labor Protection Act. Ninestar was added to a US government list that includes “entities working with the government of Xinjiang to recruit, transport, transfer, harbor or receive forced labor or Uyghurs, Kazakhs, Kyrgyz, or members of other persecuted groups out of Xinjiang* .  And as result, the US has banned all imports of its products, such as cartridges, equipment, components, etc.

“It is shocking that learn that according to the US government, the Chinese firm Ninestar is engaged in forced labor activities”, said ETIRA manager Vincent van Dijk. “This is a very serious matter, because it is not some market rumour or NGO report saying this, but an official finding by the US federal government about one of the  worlds’ largest suppliers of low-cost non-OEM single-use cartridges “. 

ETIRA, which represents European 3rd party remanufacturers of OEM toner and inkjet cartridges, said that the US ban will have a global impact. “Ninestar are also very active in the EU and has many different brands, so EU distributors would be wise to quickly distance themselves from Ninestar now to avoid being associated with forced labor. They should switch to reuse cartridges from European remanufacturers”.  Also, ETIRA urgently asks the EU and national authorities to also immediately investigate for possible similar violations of European rules on sustainable sourcing, protection of human rights, etc overhere.

ETIRA also warns that Ninestar’s US-destined single-use products may now be dumped on other world markets, including the EU. This would drive down prices of the environment-friendly non-OEM re-use cartridges, who already struggle to compete with polluting cheap unsustainable single-use cartridges from Asia, even more. Also, it would bring more waste to the EU, and kill many remanufacturing jobs in Europe, as these products will not be remanufactured for reuse as a cartridge.  

“Let there be no profiteering from forced labor”, said van Dijk. “European consumers and businesses should only buy reuse cartridges from trusted European suppliers “


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