Africa gears up for switch to circular economy
Experts pushing for a more sustainable model of production and consumption
Circular Economy in Africa promotes more sustainable production/consumption practices
Financial backup is necessary to support value chain adoption of sustainable practices
Europe launches SWITCH to the green facility to meet UN Sustainable Development Goals SDGs
If the world is to achieve the 2030 development goals, African countries must institute government-backed efforts to switch to the sustainable Circular Economy model of production/consumption.
The circular economy is a model of sustainable production and consumption that shifts economic growth from resource consumption to more sustainable approaches. For example, the Circular economy demands designing products for longer use and ease of repair rather than consumption, a profit-oriented approach that produces short life products to force resell.
Economy experts describe the circular economy model as a new paradigm for business that aims to achieve economic growth through new sustainable business models.
There are various factors that influence the transition to the circular economy including market awareness, behaviour change, greater access to data and regularization of informal activities.
For the circular economy to work, it requires rational practices by all parties of any given product value chains, from producers all the way to the consumer, all are responsible. In this regard, multinational companies (MNCs) are key because they have long value chains including their suppliers, consumers, and even financial and government institutions.
To meet global circularity goals, as articulated in Sustainable Goal Number 12 ‘Responsible Production and Consumption,’ circular economy principles require extremely close cooperation between the MNCs and Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) suppliers who are mostly in developing countries.