“The Single Use Plastic (SUP) products strategy is a step in the right direction as long as the implementation and actions taken are proportionate to Malta’s small market and lack of economies of scale”. These were the introductory words of Mr Adrian Mallia, the recently appointed Chairman of the Sustainable Development Committee of the Malta Chamber. Mr Mallia was speaking at a consultation meeting held at the Chamber, during which the SUP strategy was presented by ERA officials.
The ERA officials explained that the strategy forms part of the Government’s aim towards enhancing the circular economy.
The strategy identifies the products which will be impacted through market restrictions, economic instruments such as increased taxation, marking and products design and through existing or new Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) programmes or schemes which will be now responsible for general litter for certain SUPs. These actions will be implemented between 2020 and 2030.
The impacted plastic products include amongst others carrier bags, beverage bottles, disposable cutlery and plates, containers for toiletries, cups and stirrers, tobacco product filters and detergent containers. All full list can be found on the following link: https://eracms.gov.mt/en/Documents/SUP%20Strategy%20-%20Public%20Consultation%20-%20Final.pdf
Following ERA’s presentation, a very active discussion ensued with the members present who had the opportunity to raise a number of issues related to the strategy. These included the lack of waste management facilities in Malta, the country’s market size, the fact that no Impact Assessments were carried out by Government on the impacted sectors, lack of clarity in the definitions used.
Following the event, the Malta Chamber has prepared its own submissions based on the feedback gathered from members during this consultation meeting and those who sent submissions by email. The Chamber will follow-up on the progress of this strategy and keep its members informed with any developments.
For more information on this subject, please contact Mr Andre Fenech, Head – Policy Development on email address: firstname.lastname@example.org