Kenya Bans Plastic Bags

On the 28th of August this year, Kenya implemented a national plastic shopping bags ban, international media reported.

According to the provided information, the law makes it illegal to use, import and manufacture plastic bags. Exemptions exist for those producing plastic bags used for industrial purposes. The violation of the ban will cost a maximum fine of 38,000 US-Dollar or a four-year jail term, the news agency Associated Press is cited; the minimum fine would be 19,000 Dollar or a year’s imprisonment. The bags harm the environment, block sewers and do not decompose, the Kenyan government pointed out. Some 100 million plastic bags were handed out every year in Kenya by supermarkets alone, the UN Environmental Program had informed.

Bans in other African countries

In Tunisia, such a ban came into effect on the 1st of March this year. It requires all supermarket chains to stop distributing the bags.

Similar bans exist in other African countries like Botswana, Eritrea, Mauritania, Morocco, Rwanda, South Africa and Uganda, but practical results are still lacking, Deutsche Welle reported. Among African countries, that have adopted or announced such bans, are also Cameroon, Guinea-Bissau, Mali, Tanzania, Ethiopia and Malawi.

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