Govt. amends deadline for ban on plastic imports

Supari packets littered on a street. (Sun Photo)

The Economic Ministry has postponed the date to implement and effectively ban the import of some items made of plastic to the Maldives. 

The ban on these items was to come into effect starting from tomorrow. The Economic Ministry said that the Maldives Customs will permit the import of the items if the bill of lading/Airway bill of the item is posted as before June 1, even if the shipment arrival date is after June 1. 

The Ministry said that the purpose of the move was to accommodate and take into account the shipping delays faced due to the COVID-19 pandemic and to reduce the burden on businesses during the difficult time. 

Items banned starting from June

  • Plastic straws used for liquid consumption
  • Plastic cups, spoons, knives, and stirring sticks.
  • Styrofoam boxes to package food items
  • Plastic bags smaller than 30cm
  • Imported supari packets made of plastic
  • Plastic coffee cups with a quantity of less than 250ml
  • Plastic swabs used for ear hygiene
  • Plastic shampoo/soap bottles with a quantity of less than 50ml
  • PET bottles with a quantity of less than 500ml (including drinks water)

A similar ban will also be imposed on plastic bags thinner than 50 microns as well as shampoo/soap bottles with a quantity of 200ml starting from December next year. 

A ban on PET water bottles with a quantity of 1litre or less will also be implemented starting from December 2023.