In a bid to protect the environment and make it friendlier for its citizens and tourists, the Tanzanian government has said henceforth travellers to the East African country will not be allowed to come in with plastic carrier bags.
The government said from 1st June 2019, all plastic carrier bags, regardless of their thickness will be prohibited from being imported, exported, manufactured, sold, stored, supplied and used in Mainland Tanzania.
The Government which issued a notice to would be travellers to the country through its communication unit, however, stated that plastic or plastic packaging for medical services, industrial products, construction industry, agriculture sector, foodstuff, sanitary and waste management are not prohibited.
It said visitors to Tanzania are advised to avoid carrying plastic carrier bags or packing plastic carrier bags or items in plastic carrier bags in the suitcase or hand luggage before embarking on to the country.
The government stated that special desk will be designed at all entry points for surrender of plastic carrier bags that visitors may be bringing into Tanzania.
“Plastic carrier items known as “Ziploc bags” that are specifically used to carry toiletries will be permitted as they are expected to remain in the permanent possession of visitors and are not expected to be disposed in the country.
“The Government does not intend for visitors to Tanzania to find their stay unpleasant as we enforce the ban. However, the government expects that, in appreciation of the imperative to protect the environment and keep our country clean and beautiful, our visitors will accept minor inconveniences resulting from the plastic bags ban.”
A decade ago, Rwanda became the first African country to pioneer the ban of plastic bags in the country speared headed by Rwanda’s Environment Ministry Authority.
Also, other Africa countries like Kenya and the Democratic Republic of Congo have also prohibited the use of plastic bags in their countries to fight pollution.
According to atqnews.com, a year after it introduced the ban on the use of plastic bags, Kenya launched the world’s first 100% recycled marine plastic and flip-flop boat into the Indian Ocean.
The project is aptly named the Flipflopi Project, due to its construction using thousands of repurposed flip-flops and ocean plastic collected on beach clean-ups along the Kenya coast.