At the Cyprus House Environment Committee, MPs heard last week that Cyprus shoppers are using an excessively high numbers of plastic bags in supermarkets, prompting the discussion of a bill imposing a charge on their usage in a bid to cut back on their production which would encourage recycling and therefore help the environment.
The move follows the controversial change which saw UK supermarkets also implementing 5p charges on all plastic bags last year. Mr Charalambos Papantoniou, Chairman of the supermarket association told the committee that supermarkets had no objections over a charge being enforced immediately.
However, the representative of plastic manufacturers asked for the bill to be postponed in order to give time for the necessary amendments which will need to be put in place. They also opposed taking the burden of recycling themselves due to costs associated with this. The Environmental Service Director stated that they will settle on imposing a 5 cent charge, on plastic bags whose manufacturing value is between 2.5 – 3 cents, the timeframe for implementation has yet to be agreed.