The new war on plastic bags involves involving small businesses and various actors

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The Cabinet approved last Thursday, draft law No. 57.18, modifying and supplementing the previous law No. 77.15 on the prevention of the manufacture, import, export, marketing and use of plastic bags.

The new draft law, which was submitted by the Minister of Industry, Investment, Trade and Digital Economy, included the addition of some new definitions and materials related to the manufacture, marketing and use of plastic bags such as the identification of plastic raw material and semi-finished plastic materials. In addition to specifying the tasks of the agents assigned to the inspection in regard to inspection, seizure and inspection, and the editing of records with the granting of new powers.

The new draft law also included limiting the circulation of plastic bags between the manufacturer and the importer and its users who use them for the purposes directed to them; promoting “transparency” between the persons in charge of the surveillance and the monitored persons; extending the term of return from six months to five years; The violators should be provided with mitigation conditions in respect of fines related to fines.

In his presentation on the current situation of the manufacture, marketing and use of plastic bags, two and a half years after the application of Law 77.15 to ban the manufacture of plastic bags, the Minister of Industry, Investment, Trade and Digital Economy stated that a support fund was set up to accompany the enterprises with a financial envelope of 200 Of which 27 companies benefited from 15 projects, with a support of AED 75.5 million for alternative products. Alternative paper bags accounted for 47 percent, woven bags 13 percent, and other non-woven bags 40 percent. 21 projects benefiting from the concession program, including 16 alternative product manufacturing projects worth AED 54.7 million, creating more than 2,000 jobs, with some 250 distributors for these alternative products.

According to the minister, the consumption of raw materials used in the manufacture of these bags is reduced by 35 thousand tons between 2015 and 2018 by 50 percent. A control system at the manufacturing level has also been established by the Ministry of Industry and the border crossings by the Customs and Excise Administration In the market by the Ministry of the Interior. The total number of violations related to the market amounted to 4389 violations, the seizure of 821 tons of prohibited bags, 107 tons of bags were seized at the border crossings; 757 sentences were issued with fines of 5 million dirhams.

The Minister acknowledged the use of bags banned in traditional markets two and a half years after the application of the law and the emergence of new methods for the production and distribution of bags in the informal sector, which have been remedied and added to the new draft law.

However, the war on plastic bags is very positive. First, the involvement of small businesses, as well as other enterprises, in the process of coping with transformation, as well as adopting an integrated and integrated approach aimed at engaging and persuading the various stakeholders and actors of society to eliminate the scourge of destructive plastic bags for man and the environment .

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