Ninestar ban increases pressure on remanufacturers and puts European companies’ corporate sustainability commitments in the spotlight
September 12, 2023
- The recent Ninestar forced labour scandal that has seen the printer maker and its subsidiaries banned from importing into the US is putting pressure on the EU’s remanufacturing sector;
- It also puts European-based companies’ corporate social responsibility (CSR) commitments to the test, as ETIRA stresses continuing to trade with Ninestar “very obviously violates” ethical and sustainability pledges.
The ink and toner cartridge remanufacturing and reuse sector in Europe is under increased pressure to compete with cheaper alternatives from Asia that are flooding the market following the recent US-ban on printer maker Ninestar and its products.
In June, the country banned all imports from Chinese company Ninestar and its subsidiaries, including Pantum Electronics, Apex Microelectronics and G&G Digital Technology, under the country’s Uyghur Forced Labor Protection Act.
ETIRA issued a call on the back of the ban for European companies and public bodies to stop purchasing from the involved organisations. Now, its members are reporting the impact of the Ninestar scandal on their ability to operate.
Vincent van Dijk of ETIRA, said: “We’re already hearing reports that the US-ban on Ninestar is having an impact on trading conditions for our members here in Europe and putting them under significant pressure, as Asia-based manufacturers look to secure existing routes to market and in turn, offer far cheaper, single-use cartridges that are very hard for remanufacturers to compete with.
“We are already up against the greenwashing tactics of the Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) and the big players in the market. This additional development could put even more pressure on remanufacturers.
“However – it also puts pressure on European-based companies’ CSR policies and sustainability commitments.
“Trading with a company that has been found to be engaging in forced labour very obviously violates any such policy or commitment, and is something we and our members very strongly condone.”
According to ETIRA, as many as 70 percent of ink and toner cartridges are thrown away in Europe after first use. Remanufacturing cartridges for reuse can reduce their carbon footprint by up to 60 percent.
For further information about ETIRA, visit www.etira.org
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