Plastic manufacturers in limbo

By Sailu Bah

Manufacturers of plastic bags have expressed concern over the degree of uncertainty they face regarding the definition of plastic bags following the announcement of a ban on the use and importation of plastic bags.

Such ban announced by the office of the president is to take effect as from 1 July 2015.

A manufacturer has expressed concern that government clarifies the kind of plastic that is banned. He drew the distinction between ordinary plastic bags and industrial packaging plastic. “We want to know exactly what kind of plastic bag, is it the one just for shopping only, or does it include the industrial package plastics?” He also raised an alarm that if industrial packaging bags are also banned, it will cause thousands of people to lose their jobs and sources of income.

He also argued that industrial plastic package can be recycled if a lot of investment is put in it. He said some companies collect used plastic and recycle it to make plastic bags or other forms of plastic from it. According to him, ”Plastic recycling can help in controlling the environment from the dangers of plastics.”

He reiterated his call for the Authority to clear their doubts in making sure they understand what kind of plastic bags are banned.

He cited countries such as South Africa, 2010, Bostwana, Uganda, Kenya, Eretria, Ethiopia, Papua New Guinea, Rwanda in 2012, Congo in 2011, that have banned plastic used for shopping and substituted it with other forms of bags for shopping purposes. But he added that the industrial packaging bags have not been banned because those ones are used for recycling purpose.