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The Ministry of Health and the Environment is giving department stores, bookshops, and other small businesses that distribute ‘personalized’ plastic bags to their customers additional time to deplete their existing stock.

The phasing out period for these ‘personalized’ plastic bags – that is plastic bags that have the name of the store printed on them – has been extended until December 31st, 2018.

The decision to extend was reached yesterday Thursday, January 11th, 2018 at a meeting held at the Ministry’s headquarters during which several business owners appealed for more time to get rid of their ‘personalized’ plastic bags.

Making their case to Minister Molwyn Joseph and other Ministry officials, some proprietors claimed they were unaware of the regulations that prohibit the importation, sale, and distribution of shopping plastic bags, while others mistakenly thought the ban applied only to supermarkets and grocery shops.

Many of the owners said they import only once per year, and in great bulk and due to the nature and volume of their business, they were unable to use up their stock.

Throughout the meeting, the business owners expressed support for the government’s shopping plastic bag ban initiative.

The Ministry of Health & the Environment is pleased with the outcome of Thursday’s meeting and with the response of the business representatives.

The Ministry anticipates that the owners will make good use of the extended time and exhaust their stock of ‘personalized’ plastic bags before the end of 2018.

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