Most companies and organizations identify the circular economy with waste management today.
On January 15, 2020, a report about the domestic situation of the circular economy was published which also contains the results of a survey conducted by the Circular Economy Platform, which was established more than a year ago. The aim of the research was to identify the most important challenges and to map the business solutions that have already been implemented.
Most respondents think of the circular economy as an expense (38%), although according to international experience, profits have risen at half of the multinational companies that already have circular economic activities in operation.
Understanding that costs can be reduced through the circular economy is of outstanding importance. This can include reducing expenses through greater resource efficiency, saving on water use, energy, and raw materials.
“The survey revealed that there is still a lot to do to avoid wasting our precious resources by creating the right material cycle. The move towards a more productive and less resource-intensive economy requires investment in eco-innovation, which can have significant benefits in terms of competitiveness and job creation as well” – said Irén Márta, Managing Director of BCSDH.
According to the respondents, besides state incentives and legislative provisions, the most important factors that facilitate the transition to the circular economy would be the development of a domestic circular strategy and the identification of good practices.
The three most important topics that respondents thought should be addressed: sharing best practices (73%), development (innovation) opportunities (59%), and providing information about the concepts and goals of the Circular Economy.
“The survey confirmed the relevance of the demand that brought the Circular Economy Platform to life a year ago: there is a need for knowledge sharing, innovation, and sharing best practices and education. The circular economy is an irreversible global tendency today. However, much remains to be done to complete the full cycle and exploit the associated competitive advantages” – added Irén Márta.
The report can be downloaded here.
What is the Circular Economy Platform?
On 29 November 2018, the Circular Economy Platform was officially established in Hungary as an initiative of the Business Council for Sustainable Development in Hungary (BCSDH), the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, and the Ministry of Innovation and Technology. In 2019, a total of 80 companies and organizations joined the Platform to accelerate the transition to a circular business model by sharing knowledge and creating common projects and forms of collaboration. The Circular Economy Platform plays a prominent role in facilitating the paradigm shift and joint thinking, along with building a community of forward-thinking change leaders and sharing business solutions that make a real impact. On November 28, 2019, a declaration of cooperation between the Hungarian Circular Economy Platform and the Holland Circular Hotspot was signed, which will make the transition more dynamic through the process of international knowledge sharing.
About the survey
In the summer of 2019, the Circular Economy Platform, with the professional leadership of the Hungarian Business Council for Sustainable Development (BCSDH) and Bay Zoltán Nonprofit Ltd. for Applied Research, conducted a survey of the domestic potential of the circular economy. The aim of the research was to identify the most important challenges and to map the business solutions that have already been implemented. Nearly 90 organizations participated in the survey, 84% of which are in the corporate sector, while most of them (60%) are small and medium-sized enterprises. A publication presenting the results of the survey contains eleven business solutions that have already been implemented.