Vivian Ahiayibor (right), the Managing Director of City Waste Recycling Limited, showing some innovative products developed by pupils across the country
Vivian Ahiayibor (right), the Managing Director of City Waste Recycling Limited, showing some innovative products developed by pupils across the country

Waste management initiative targets decent jobs for collectors

A private waste management company, the City Waste Recycling Limited, in partnership with an Austrian-based company, has initiated a project to tackle Ghana's waste management challenge and contribute to the establishment of a circular economy.


The over €1 million project will set up waste-to-resource buyback centres across all 16 regions to collect valuable waste materials as part of a comprehensive approach for collecting diverse waste types such as e-waste, batteries, sawdust, plastic and textiles.

The initiative will also help to expand the network of waste collectors and create a concept to purchase recyclables at fair prices from the informal sector. 

While the City Waste Recycling Limited, Ghana and the JC Hagen of Austria are contributing 50 per cent of the total investment needed for the project, the initiative, has half of the investment covered by the Deutsche Entwicklungsgesellschaft (KfW/DEG), representing the German government. The JC Hagen is serving as the off-taker.

This came to light at a stakeholders workshop organised by the City Waste Recycling Ltd in collaboration with the JC Hagen GmbH to shed light on the untapped potential in Ghana's waste management sector.

The workshop, themed, "Development of a Circular Economy," brought policymakers, industries, non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and collection point operators together to replicate the waste buyback models and build synergies on circular economy development in Ghana. 

Project overview

Giving an overview of the project, the Managing Director of the City Waste Recycling Limited, Vivian Ahiayibor, said the initiative would not only create green jobs but also contribute to adapting and mitigating climate change.

The project, she said, aimed to empower waste collectors, particularly women by providing training and fair compensation, thereby uplifting waste collectors from the informal sector.

She said various regions had actively embraced the initiative with organisations such as Caritas Ghana, the Green Women International, the Presbyterian Church and the Knights of Marshall actively participating to turn waste into resources and promote sustainable development.

The project, scheduled to end by September 2024, started in October 2021 and by 2026, when all the collection points would be in full operation, the total number of jobs created is projected to reach an impressive 6,260, including over 4,000 new jobs for waste pickers.

J C Hagen's commitment

The JC Hagen GmbH's representative, Josef Hagen shared the company's commitment to leveraging its expertise in PET recycling to contribute to Ghana's circular industry. 

He said, JC Hagen with a history dating back to 1989, had been actively involved in PET recycling and was proud to support Ghana in its endeavour to combat pollution, reduce CO2 emissions and create jobs.

“Recycling is a success story in Ghana, thanks to its very motivated and hard-working people,” he said.

Government commitment 

The Director for Policy, Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation (PPME) at the Ministry of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation (MESTI), Lydia Essuah, in a speech read on her behalf by a programme officer, Aliyata Uthman, emphasised Ghana's commitment to transitioning to a circular economy.

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