The Zambia Development Agency (ZDA) believes the resolution to ban the use of disposable plastic bags will stimulate the manufacture of durable alternatives that are environmentally sustainable.
ZDA expects the ban to increase value addition within the timber industry as a result of a growth in paper-based packaging.
The regulation is further expected to encourage innovation in the handicraft sub-sector aimed at producing attractive, fashionable, yet durable carrier bags using local biodegradable materials while creating more jobs.
ZDA Director General Perry Mapani explains that the opportunities created by the new regulation will establish a vibrant and robust recycling sub-sector that will utilize locally generated waste to create profits, new environmentally-friendly products, and more jobs for Zambians.
“The growth of this sector will support manufacturing companies that spend over USS$ 30 million annually on imported packaging products.
The Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) regulations, Statutory Instrument (SI) No. 65 of 2018, which encourages manufacturers to extend their responsibility on products beyond consumption, will stimulate innovation, diversification and competitiveness in the manufacturing sector,” elaborated Mr Mapani.
“Further, the Agency is poised to attract investments in the manufacture of other durable alternative shopping bags to be used in place of disposable bags,” added the Director-General.