RecycleCorp News

First export of plastics for recycling in Vanuatu

On Thursday afternoon this week Vanuatu Environmental Science Society and RecycleCorp hosted an event at the RecycleCorp yard to mark the first export of plastic bottles from Vanuatu. The bottles are being shipped to Australia at the end of this month to be recycled back into plastic bottles. Dr. Christina Shaw, Director of VESS said “this is true bottle to bottle recycling, and it is our first foray into creating a circular economy for plastics”. Christina and Andrew Hibgame, who is the owner and director of RecycleCorp were joined in the celebration by the Lord Mayor and Deputy Lord Mayor of Port Vila, the Japanese Ambassador, the Acting Australian High Commissioner and the Acting British High Commissioner, representatives from the French embassy, as well as government officers, the World Vision team, JICA and IUCN representatives and business owners and managers. The guests were welcomed as champions that have rallied to the cause of ridding the oceans of plastic pollution as many played a role to make the export of these plastic bottles possible. 

Christina said that they often get asked “why don’t you recycle plastic?” and explained that it is not as straight forward as a lot of people think. She went on talk about how this milestone was achieved. Many people and organisations were involved. At the beginning VESS’s data collected during community cleanups and Green Waves no Plastik Bag Plis petition raised awareness of the issue of plastic pollution. Christina said that a pivotal moment came when the then Prime Minister, Mr. Charlot Salwai, went to the UN Oceans Conference in New York and after hearing about the plight of our oceans made a commitment to address the plastic issue in Vanuatu. He returned and announced a ban on plastics. Ralph Regenvanu, as Foreign Minister, took on the mantel of championing plastic pollution reduction and in 2018 single use plastic shopping bags, plastic straws and polystyrene takeaway containers were banned with the second phase of bans came into effect the following year. 

About the same time, JICA, who have been supporting waste management in Vanuatu for many years, called a meeting to moot the idea of developing a Container deposit scheme and forming a recycling association. Plastic bottles are a commonly littered item but only attract a low price as a recyclable. They also need to be clean. Therefore, a collection system is needed such as a container deposit scheme. Work is ongoing to develop one in Vanuatu. Before one starts the bottles that are in country that have not had a deposit paid on them, need to be collected or accounted for in the system and the Vanuatu Recycling and Waste Management Association have been seeking funding for this. Late last year Kendra Derousseau from World Vision approached VESS and RecycleCorp saying funding, that could be put towards a bottle buy-back and environmental cleanup, was available. This led to the Selem Plastik mo Sevem Solwota event in June this year supported by the Australian government and in partnership with the ANZ Bank. The aim was to collect a million bottles and in only 3 and a half days nearly 1.4 million bottles were brought to the seafront! Over 10 million vatu was paid to the community for the bottles that were collected. 

The people involved in collecting, processing and shipping the container from Vanuatu include: Vanuatu Beverage, RecycleCorp, VESS, World Vision, Australian Government Ifira Stevedores and Swire Shipping.

Scale is usually an impediment to recycling in a small island developing state but because of this initiative there were lots of bottles collected in one place and therefore gave rise to the opportunity to trial plastic bottle recycling. With the help of the IUCN Plastic Waste Free Islands project, funded by Norwegian Aid Agency- Norad and a Dutch company called Searious Business, VESS and RecycleCorp have been able to arrange for a container of bottles to be exported to Australia for recycling. Only the clean bottles can go, so only 4 tonnes of the 42 tonnes of plastic that was collected at the event were suitable. The rest of the container has been filled with bottles and bottle caps from Vanuatu Beverage. The export of this container of plastics will be a true pilot to find out the logistic and costs involved in recycling bottles from Vanuatu. Andrew Hibgame spoke about the logistic and barriers of recycling in general and in particular recycling plastics, the economics of which just do not add up without funding. The price that could be paid for the plastic is about the same prices as the shipping and loading of the container. For this pilot Ifira Stevedoring are transporting and loading the container at no charge.  Swire Shipping, under the Moana Taka programme, with the assistance of Tropical Agency are covering the cost of the shipping. Andrew thanked these two companies for their generous support but said that if we want to be able to recycle plastics in the future, we should not be reliant on donations and funding. The system needs to be sustainable. He believes that the consumer should pay, and this is why he has been advocating for the container Deposit scheme to be implemented in Vanuatu. If you were wondering where the other 38 tonnes of plastic bottles from the Selem Plastik mo Sevem Solwota initiative went, they were baled to about 10% of their volume and taken to the land fill. The Lord Mayor and the Port Vila Municipality generously waived the tipping fees for this environmental cleanup.

Mark Pardoe from Swire shipping and Russell Mitchell from Ifira Stevedores closing the container of plastic bottles ready to be shipped to Australia for recycling

Christina said “you can see that many people were involved in getting to a position where we can recycle plastic bottles. Concerned citizens raising awareness and politicians implementing policies to address plastics created the momentum. The World Vision Selem Plastik Mo Sevem Solwota initiative collected the bottles with funding from DFAT and assistance from ANZ. RecycleCorp had the capability to process the bottles with existing equipment. Serious Business and the Plastic Waste Fee Islands Project assisted with the arrangement of the export. Ifira Stevedoring and Swire Shipping are donating the transport, loading and shipping of the container. It was a huge collaborative effort.” After the speeches the guests were given a tour of the recycling facilities at RecycleCorp by Shaun Hibgame, the general manager. They saw the equipment used to process the scrap metal, how glass is crushed to sand, and viewed a container of car and solar batteries that will be soon shipped to Korea for recycling. Then the container of plastic bottles was closed and sealed for export.

RecycleCorp – What We Do

At RecycleCorp, we collect and recycle all sorts of scrap metals like:

  • Steel
  • Aluminum
  • Copper
  • Brass
  • Electric Motor
  • Gear box
  • Cars/Trucks/Buses
  • Batteries
  • Radiators (which can be found in air conditioners and vehicles)
  • Pretty much anything metal etc, washing machines, dryers, BBQ’s, window frames, microwaves, bed frames, food and drink cans and so on.

Call us today for a free pickup, Monday to Friday 8am to 4pm, on 55 88047

We have even started recycling GLASS. For more information call 55 47147 for more information

We also do Machine and Equipment hiring.

  • Crane Hire: For moving heavy equipment / machinery from from one place to another. *Please Note* our crane is rated at 2.5 tons, this is its MAX Limit
  • Plasma Cutter hire: For cutting up heavy metals that cannot be lifted by a crane or even squashed by a baler. Heavy metals include; tractors, shipping containers, bulldozers, ships, etc..
  • Excavator hire – we have a 22ton excavator perfect for clearing blocks of scrub and long grass – reasonable rates.





Getting Rid of Glass Waste in Port Vila

To interested restaurants, resorts, bars, business houses and households.

RecycleCorp Vanuatu started a new project, which has been running since October 2018,  Glass Recycling.
We collect all types of glass jars/bottles from our customers and recycle them.
The glass will be crushed down into a granule form, which depending on the size can be used in various ways such as pool filters, sand blasting and even construction.
Please view the information and pictures. There is a small fee for collection, which covers the collection and recycling of the glass waste. This is explained on the information sheet.
The bins are 240lt wheelie bins (see attached photo). We provide weekly collections of the bins.
The glass will be recycled in country.
There is an option for businesses and an option for households as obviously the amount of glass waste in a household is quite small when compared to a restaurant or bar.
If you have any further questions OR would like to be part of this new recycling project, do not hesitate to call +678 55 47147 or email
Check out our website at, to see other products that RecycleCorp also recycle.
Glass Information12

RecycleCorp Acknowledges its Glass Recycling Customers

For the last 7 months, RecycleCorp has been has been doing weekly collections around Port Vila for some Households, Resorts and Restaurants that wanted to be a part of Glass Recycling in Vanuatu. We would like to acknowledge these loyal customers for being part of and promoting Glass Recycling In Vanuatu. A big thank you from RecycleCorp for their continued support.DEPC visit to RecycleCorp-9

Angelfish Cove Villas


ANZ Vanuatu

Veterinary Clinic

Breakas Resort

Cafe Vila

Mark & Catherine Hurley

Blue Marlin Lodge

David Turnbull

The Melanesian

Holiday Inn

Nambawan Cafe

Jills Cafe

Andrew Hibgame

Waterfront Bar

Kaiviti Motel

Coco De Mer

K2 Cafe

Karen Day

Vanuatu Glass & Aluminium

Sue Bedford

Havana Resort

Breadfruit Apartments

DMC Vanuatu


Battery Clean up

Call RecycleCorp today on (+678) 5588047 if you would like us to collect your old car batteries lying around your garage. We accept lead acid batteries or solar batteries, and will gladly pay for them when we pickup. A price range is listed below the picture.

Also visit our website at RecycleCorp Vanuatu for more information on what other sort of scrap metal we collect for recycling.

IMG_20190327_091150 - Copy

Price Range

Batteries labelled:

  1. 100 vatu                                                            3. 300 vatu
  2. 200 vatu                                                            4. 400 vatu

Over 5000 batteries shipped out of Vanuatu

The following article appeared in the Daily Post on Saturday 24th March:

This week five containers full of used lead-acid batteries will leave the RecycleCorp yard in Bladinere and will be on their way to a battery recycling facility in Korea. This shipment is the first of its kind out of Vanuatu under the Basel Convention. You might never have heard of the Basel Convention and when the Vanuatu Government ratified it in July last year, the news might have passed you by. But it is good news for Vanuatu because just 10 weeks after this legal instrument came into force on 15thJanuary, we are shipping out over 5000 used batteries.

Recycling batteries in from Vanuatu
Shaun and Andrew Hibgame from RecycleCorp with the Director of Environment, Donna Kalfatak and DEPC staff inspecting the batteries before shipment.

The Basel Conventions on theControl of Transboundary Movements of Hazardous Wastes and Their Disposal came about after it was discovered that unscrupulous operators from developed countries were dumping toxic waste in eastern Europe and the developing world in the 1980s. The convention, which came into effect in 1992, was designed to stop this “toxic trade”. Because used lead acid batteries are considered hazardous waste, even though there is a market for them to be recycled and they are not being shipped abroad to get dumped, they are still subject to the conditions set out in the Basel Convention and cannot be shipped to or though any country that is a party to the conventions without the correct permits. This meant thatbefore Vanuatu became a party to the Basel Convention, it effectively prevented batteries being recycled. But now the situation is resolved, and RecycleCorp is happy to take your old batteries and send them away to be recycled.

Batteries are essential and our trucks and solar panels would not work without them. But when they come to the end of their useful life they can pose a health and environmental threat. The acid inside the battery can leak out and corrode whatever it comes into contact with. Lead is poisonous, can cause blindness and it has been shown to have detrimental affects on brain development in children. Whilst the batteries are working with the acid and lead protected by the casing they don’t pose a threat but if the casing is broken and the contents escape problems can occur. It is much better for used lead acid batteries to be recycled than be left in the back yard, in the environment or even the landfill. This shipment of batteries is going to a facility in South Korea that will recycle the acid, the lead and even the plastic casing that encloses the batteries. The danger is gone and the resources inside the battery are not wasted and will be reused.

Minister of Foreign Affairs with the shipment of used lead acid batteries for recycling in Vanuatu.
Minister Regenvanu shows his enthusiasm for the export of lead acid batteries.

You might not think that Government ratifying an international convention on toxic waste means anything to the ordinary man and woman on the street. But in this case the effort by the Department of Environmental Protection and Conservation and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to ensure this convention is recognized in Vanuatu law means that ordinary people have a proper means of disposal for a potentially dangerous product and we, our children and our environment are safer because if it and valuable resources are not going to waste. Andrew Hibgame, director of RecycleCorp, said, “We are very pleased to have worked closely with the Department of Environment and Foreign Affairs to overcome what was an impediment to recycling and are happy that Vanuatu can now properly and safely recycle another product”

If you have any used lead acid batteries that would like to dispose of you can call RecycleCorp on 5547147. They will pick them up and will pay a small amount for them. More information about what RecycleCorp recycles is available on If you would like to know more about the Basel Convention or DEPC’s waste programmes please contact Roselyn Bue visit the DEPC website



Crane Truck Hire

RecycleCorp offers crane truck hire for a suitably cheap price. Our truck hire includes moving vehicles like bus, truck or car, heavy pipes and water tanks, and also other heavy metals from one place to another.

Contact us today at +678 5547147 to arrange a truck hire. Also checkout our website for other types of Heavy Machinery that we also hire out.

Recycle Your Glass

RecycleCorp the number 1 metal recycling company is currently recycling glass. Everyday we consume organic and processed products (food/liquor/beverages) that are canned or bottled. To help reduce climate change, we try our best to recycle these waste products to be reusable and of less pollutant effect to the environment.

RecycleCorp has the perfect solution for you. We now provide a glass collection scheme. We hire out 240lt wheelie bins for a weekly collection of your glass waste and tin cans.  When we collect the full bins we replace it with a clean bin, so you don’t get those yucky smells.

Glass collected is recycled right here in Vanuatu. For more information on how you can hire a bin or two, call RecycleCorp today on +678 5547147.

And don’t forget to check out our website for other items we recycle.







Recycling Household Appliances

Do you have a whole bunch of household items that you don’t know what to do with? To used or damaged to use or sell but to big to go in a rubbish bag.

At RecycleCorp, we also recycle kitchen appliances like stoves, cooking pots, stainless/aluminium dishes, cutlery, frying pans, sinks, toasters, electric cook pots, microwaves, washing machines, power tools and metal window frames to name but a few.

As long as it is metal we will recycle it.

Call us today on +678 5588047 to arrange a free pickup.

Also, check out our website for some of the other items we recycle.


Dengue Clean-up

Ministry of Health, in conjunction with the World Health Organization, made a press release, as of January 7th, that there has been one confirmed Dengue case here in Port Vila since January 3rd.

Dengue is a viral infection that is transmitted by the Aedes mosquito, a daytime biting mosquito which lives in urban settings and breeds in standing water found in containers around households like tin tuna and tin coca cola, paint tins, drums, buckets, old car parts, etc.. or anything that holds water.

Call RecycleCorp today on +678 5588047 to arrange for a Dengue clean-up at your yard. We collect all metal materials, including the above mentioned items, that could hold water and act as a breeding ground for mosquitoes.

Visit our website for what sort of scrap metals we collect.