This year’s International Automobile Recycling Congress IARC 2019 takes place in Austrian Capital, Vienna from the 20th to 22nd March.
Organisers of the event, ICM, recently had the opportunity to talk with Manfred Beck, Chairman of the IARC Steering Committee about the forthcoming congress:
• Manfred, the next International Automobile Recycling Congress (IARC) will be held in Vienna in March. Can you give us an update of the program?
“Preparations for the congress are in full swing. The Lecture Committee has again drafted a great program with excellent speakers and interesting topics.”
• What highlights can participants look forward to this year?
“This year, the IARC has three first-rate keynote speakers who will highlight important issues concerning the automobile recycling industries. Andreas Tschiessner of strategy consultancy McKinsey & Co. will elaborate on ‘Mobility’s Circular Economy Potential’, Johann Prammer of steelmaker voestalpine will address the issue of the steel industry’s technology trends and materials for 2050. And I myself, in my capacity as Chairman of the IARC Steering Committee, will look back on “19 years of the ELV Directive – what has it brought the industry?” Another highlight on the first day of the congress is the panel discussion ‘Opportunities of the Circular Economy’, with the participation of eight industry experts.”
• What will the main topics of this year’s congress be?
“Amongst other things, the IARC 2019 will place special emphasis on the following: reuse and recycling, legislation and regulation, sorting and classification, e-mobility and car battery recycling.”
• To what extent has the topic of e-mobility reached the automotive recycling industry?
“E-mobility is a subject of growing importance to the car recycling industry. Notably the storage, transportation and recycling of lithium-ion batteries have to be carefully studied because safety is a major issue.”
• Until a few months ago, global automobile sales were still brilliant, but have weakened in recent months. Must car recyclers prepare for fewer end-of-life cars?
“Although global car sales dropped a bit last year, there is no reason for the industry to worry that fewer ELVs will become available to the market. Last year, car sales in Europe even increased for the fifth year in succession, by 0.1% to total 15.2 million vehicles. This year, for the first time, IARC will present a so-called ‘industry barometer’ in which we ask delegates about their opinion on the state of the industry. We will then be able to give a more detailed answer about the general feeling of actors in the automobile industry.”
• Will there be a supporting program apart from the actual congress this year?
“Yes, of course. The IARC is organising plant tours to three very interesting companies. The Scholz Austria Group is a market leader in recycling ferrous and non-ferrous scrap, notably in the field of ELV recycling. Isovolta manufactures technical laminates and composites. voestalpine Stahlwelt manufactures, processes and develops steel for high-quality products and innovative solutions. As the plant tours are usually booked out early, we recommend reserving a place well in advance.”
• It is a good tradition that the participants are all invited to a networking dinner in a special location at the end of the first day of the congress. What can the guests look forward to this year?
“This year, the IARC’s Networking Dinner will again take place in the famous renaissance-style ‘Kursalon’ music hall. The theme of the evening is ‘Rock me Amadeus’, which is a song recorded by Austrian musician Falco. The song once topped the singles charts on both sides of the Atlantic. It was Falco’s only number one hit in the United States and the United Kingdom as well as much of Europe. As usual, be prepared for an exciting, fun-packed evening with wonderful food, drinks and music.”
For an opportunity to exchange news, views and ideas with experts from all areas of the automobile recycling sector head along to this year’s industry meeting. For all the details on the program and how to register, go to: www.icm.ch