IRT 2013

The International Roundtable On Auto Recycling Makes It Way Back To The U.S.

IRT 2012 Participants, Liverpool, England

The International Roundtable on Auto Recycling (IRT) gives auto recyclers from around the world to come together to discuss industry topics, best practices and exchange national information. Held roughly every 18 months, this year’s event - the seventh held - takes place in conjunction with the ARA Annual Convention & Trade Show in Phoenix, Ariz. ( on November 10 - 12, 2013.

“We like to combine the events to make it easier to plan,” explained Steve Fletcher managing director of Automotive Recyclers of Canada (ARC). “And also to extend the interest to global participants to experience the local recycling market in greater depth and make it easier for local recyclers to participate,” said Steve Fletcher Managing Director of ARC - Automotive Recyclers of Canada.

As the host organization, Fletcher said ARA is taking the lead on planning and is one of five associations that have been involved from day one, the others being ARC, EGARA, Australia ARA and Japan ARA.

“I have been actively involved as ARC has hosted before and I have facilitated the last two IRTs,” said Fletcher. “We try to find the balance between the host association providing content, as it is relevant to the locals, easier to find speakers, etc., and ensure the content is of a global nature.”

Some of that content will be addressed at the Global Presentations on Monday, Nov. 11. The tentative topic list is:

• Global online auction opportunities (ARA Direct)
• International industry online education (ARAU)
• International Standards - operational and sales
• Mexico - New government ELV plan
• ISRI - Robin Weiner on the global scrap market
• Product Stewardship / Producer Responsibility - Steve Fletcher, ARC
• Used part bans (South Africa, Malaysia, Argentina) and used parts importation bans (China)
• International automotive recycling-emerging markets - Steve Kriter, Hollander, Inc.

The Tuesday, Nov. 12 facilitated roundtable discussions will give attendees the ability to discuss these topics and more in depth. These topics all touch on the globalization of the auto recycling industry, i.e. the development of an increasingly integrated global auto recycling economy through improved trade and communication.

“I believe the major benefit of globalization is the learning we can undertake from each other - not only in terms of government policy, but in dealing with key suppliers (OEMs, repairers, insurers, scrap). All those industries talk to one another and meet in some fashion,” said Fletcher.

“We have found our direct contacts with other associations very beneficial to our dealing with the Canadian government - not only are they impressed that we have a global view but we can access other global solutions / problems to stave off bad policy or hopefully generate good policy. The direct meetings at the IRT start that process, but once you have met with your colleagues it is easier to engage throughout the 18 months between IRTs.”

Fletcher also said the IRT gives auto recyclers from around the world an educational opportunity to see how each country processes a vehicle and sells its parts.

“The Europeans are ahead of us in how to fully process a vehicle so we get their expertise in equipment and approaches,” explained Fletcher. “But, we are ahead of them in selling parts and there is finally growing awareness overseas that this is the more profitable path. I would expect that many will come from outside North America to try and figure out how and why we sell parts, which is an opportunity to sell our technology.”

The IRT 2013 also includes country reports, 20 - 30 minute time slots for the various countries represented by associations to present what is happening in their region that would be applicable to the global community. Fletcher said he’s heard from representatives from Australia, Canada, Hungary, Japan, the United Kingdom and United States who will be attending and Michael Wilson, ARA CEO, is working on Korea, South Africa, India, Brazil, Argentina, to name a few. Fletcher said they are expecting about 80 delegates. The next IRT taking place in Japan will also be announced.

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