Dubai bans single-use plastic bags and products from January 1

The ban excludes certain products required for export purposes

By Wam

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Published: Sun 31 Dec 2023, 1:27 PM

Last updated: Sun 31 Dec 2023, 11:49 PM

Dubai announced a ban on single-use plastic bags and products in the emirate from January 1, 2024. Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of Dubai Executive Council issued the resolution on Sunday (December 31, 2023).

The ban applies to single-use disposable products and recycled ones, including both plastics and non-plastic items, regardless of their material composition.


These include plastic and non-plastic single-use products, as well as food delivery packaging materials, fruit and vegetable wrapping, thick plastic bags, plastic containers, and packaging materials either partially or entirely made of plastic, such as those used for plastic bottles, snack bags, wet wipes, balloons, and balloon sticks besides food packaging.

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This extends to sellers and consumers within Dubai, covering private development zones and free zones, including the Dubai International Financial Centre.

The ban excludes rolls of thin bags used in packing meat, fish, vegetables, fruits, grains, bread, garbage bags, and products intended for export or re-export. These items include single-use plastic shopping bags, single-use shopping bags, and single-use disposable plastic products.

Bans

Ban on single-use plastic products: Starting from January 1, 2025, products like plastic stirrers, table covers, cups, styrofoam food containers, plastic straws, and plastic cotton swabs, will be prohibited.

Other single-use plastic products: Commencing on January 1, 2026, the ban will extend to including plastic plates, plastic food containers, plastic tableware, and beverage cups and their plastic lids.

Fines

Violators will be subject to a fine of Dh200. If the same violation occurs within one year of the previous offence, the penalty will be doubled, with a maximum not exceeding Dh2,000 when doubled.

Individuals who wish to contest decisions against them may submit written grievances to the Director-General of the relevant government department responsible for licensing economic activities in the emirate. These entities include the Department of Economy and Tourism and authorities overseeing private development zones and free zones, such as the Dubai International Financial Centre.

Grievances must be submitted within ten working days from the date of notification regarding the decision, action, or administrative penalty. A committee established for this purpose by the Director-General will resolve the complaint within ten working days from its submission. The decision issued on the complaint is considered final and nullifies any other decision that may contradict its provisions.

Aim

The decision aims to protect the natural environment and local biological and animal wealth, and to motivate community members to adopt sustainable and environmentally friendly behaviour.

It also aims to encourage the private sector to promote the use of recycled products, aligning with circular economy practices that foster sustainable recycling of products in local markets. It also seeks to regulate the use and recycling of single-use and plastic products.

The decision requires all relevant authorities and entities, as well as consumers, to collaborate on developing and implementing mechanisms and practices aimed at reducing the production and consumption of single-use products, and to adopt practices and initiatives that foster increased reliance on the use of reusable products.

It also mandates sellers to actively participate in projects, initiatives, and programmes targeting the reduction of plastic materials and single-use products. Sellers must offer specified reusable alternatives at reasonable prices, as outlined by the relevant authorities.

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