According to Tuesday’s report from the Emirates News Agency (WAM), the United Arab Emirates will restrict the use of plastic shopping bags nationally beginning in the new year.
Beginning on January 1, 2024, the United Arab Emirates will impose nationwide restrictions on the use of plastic bags and other single-use items, including biodegradable plastic bags. On the same day, it will be illegal to use any kind of disposable bag.
The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has announced that all imports, manufacturing, and commerce of single-use plastic goods would be prohibited as of January 1, 2026. Foam plates, food containers, and boxes are among these items, as are plastic cups, lids, cutlery (forks, knives, and spoons), and other household items (styrofoam).
This is in accordance with Ministerial Resolution 380 of 2022, which controls the sale of single-use items in the economy. In an effort to reduce environmental damage, this decision has been made.
Rolls of thin bags used in accordance with what is indicated in the guidance produced by the Ministry of Climate Change and Environment in conjunction with the appropriate authorities are exempt from the restriction per the decision. Items created from recycled materials and products destined for export or re-export that bear appropriate labels are included. The sale of these items is strictly prohibited in the nation.
According to the Ministry of Climate Change and Environment’s advisory, single-use bags and domestically produced goods created from recycled materials are exempt from the prohibition. In addition, the responsible authority has the right to identify and exclude other items and materials in collaboration with the Ministry.
Food packaging, plastic bottles, cotton swabs, cracker bags, cigarette butts, wet wipes, balloons, and balloon sticks are just some of the single-use items that were specifically targeted in the resolution, which urged all relevant authorities, consumers, and stakeholders to implement mechanisms and practices to reduce the production and use of such items.
Sustainable, multi-use alternatives should be easily accessible at all retail locations on a permanent basis, and this decision emphasized the need of promoting and supporting such projects.
Several municipalities have passed ordinances prohibiting the use of plastic bags. An outright ban on the distribution and usage of plastic bags for single use was instituted in Abu Dhabi by the Environment Agency in June of 2016.
The Executive Council of Dubai has approved a policy that will restrict the distribution of single-use shopping bags and introduce a tax on their usage in all Dubai retailers beginning on July 1, 2022.
In addition, on December 31, 2018, the Executive Council of the Emirate of Sharjah approved a resolution to ban the use of all single-use plastic bags and materials across the Emirate beginning on January 1, 2024. The prohibition on the use of plastic bags after their initial usage has been approved by the Executive Council of Umm Al Quwain and will go into effect on January 1, 2023.