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Friday, April 2, 2021

Zambia bans the use of plastic bags as packaging materials

Headlines Zambia bans the use of plastic bags as packaging materials

Water and Energy Ministry Permanent Secretary Bishop Edward Chomba
Water and Energy Ministry Permanent Secretary Bishop Edward Chomba

Ministry of Water Development, Sanitation and Environmental Protection has banned the use of packaging materials such as plastic bags and their resultant waste.

Making the announcement in Lusaka today, Ministry’s Permanent Secretary Ed Chomba said this is in accordance with section 58 of the Environmental Management Act No 12 of 2011.

Dr. Chomba said this is the Extended Producer Regulations which extends the responsibility of the producer of a product or class of products to the post-consumer stage of the product or class of products.

He said the extended Producer Regulations is one of the tools that government will rely on to manage, in an environmentally sound manner, packaging materials such as plastics and their resultant waste.

Dr. Chomba said the extended Producer Regulations will also regulate non-returnable glass and plastic bottle, cartons, beverage cans, waste oils, pesticides or chemical containers, used tyres, electrical and electronic equipment.

He said the regulations require a person or persons whose activities generate waste with potential to pollute the environment to employ measures essential to minimize waste through treatment, reclamation, re-use, recovery or recycling.

Dr. Chomba said the Ministry has since informed stakeholders and the general public that the Zambia Environmental Management Agency (ZEMA) has been engaging stakeholders from all sectors of the economy on the content, framework and the way regulations will operate.

He said among the key stakeholders that have so far been consulted include the Zambia Association of Manufacturers, Zambia Association of Chambers of Commerce and Industry, Oil Marketing Companies, Chain Stores and Shopping Centre Managers.

Dr. Chomba however, said the process of engagement is ongoing and will cover other sectors such as the electrical and electronic equipment merchants and chemical industry.


  1. Vokopela without understanding fully the repurcussions. Mumbi Phiri wrote an article on HeforShe project and a few days later a boy molested two of his friends at a boarding school on the Copperbelt.

    Don’t do things just because you heard another Country did the same. It might not work for you.

    • The decision is Ok. Better to copy good things than bad things. This one, our children will thank us for it but not allowing men to marry each other.

    • Lombe you are such a dull chap, how do start condemning progressive things like that? You really are a UPND buffoon , in actual sense you are an 1diot to say the least. Learn to give credit were its due! fyototo fyototo all the time. Nayaa inee

    • This is what wrong with these empty tins I suggested this 5 years ago when Kenya banned plastics for shopping …you should have given a future date then instead of announcing a ban today..dont you realise business have packaging in storage just like you claim you have fuel in reserve hence you can not reduce it.

    • Lazy bum maggot ‘suggested’ banning plastics 5 years ago hohohoho.
      Mr Know it all is today ‘trying’ to comment about ‘pollution and plastics’. bum maggot

    • Good move!

      I hope replacements to plastic bags are in place. But knowing how this government works, katwishi tata.

      In any case, this should challenge the natives to come up with local solutions, making carrier bags using the vast amount bio degradable materials at their disposal.

    • At least I dont come here to talk about HH and spew insults …anyway am not surprised what good can come out of a boy raised by callworkers!!

    • Lombe, you don’t know what you’re talking about. Countries borrow ideas from each other. Most likely Rwanda borrowed the idea from another country. If it works there, it can work in Zambia too. KEEP ZAMBIA CLEAN!!!!

    • It will not work here. No sensitisation what so ever. What’s the alternative? Besides, I just came from shoprite with enuf plastics to clog a drainage.

    • Difference is that when those countries you have mentioned banned plastics they had announced beforehand and give businesses a grace period…more importantly positioned govt textile companies to manufacture textile carrier bags and increased duty on imported bags.

    • Textile/cotton bags, heavy duty bags made out of maize meal sacks…this is a window of opportunity my friend…get off the keyboard and invest in this sector!!

    • I would not be surprised if the PF government have already lined up a Chinese supplier.

      I bet contracts are signed already by the Chinese, with thick brown envelopes going the other direction.

      Imisango shimo shimo isha ba PF tefintu!!!!!

    • Sharp Shooter – How are you going to carry fresh fish, fresh meet, etc in paper bags? What is required is to ban single use plastic carrier bags.

  2. This is a great piece of legislation, plastics contaminant everything,soil, rivers and they take forever to decompose please impose fines on all shops that will still issue plastics. well done

  3. Ministry of Warra and sanitaytion headed by one Pem Sec going by the name Edd Chomba.I dont how many years he lived in USA but all I have noticed is how he pronounces “Water” His accent sounds Zambian but he only becomes an American when when pronouncing the word Water. He says “Warra”

  4. Provide alternative solutions as well. I’m sure we are going into paper bag use. What if we started using cotton based packaging materials since cotton can be grown?

    • Exactly my point the should announced this giving shop owners and wholesalers to offload and destroy existing stock…imagine how much of a headache this is for a Supermarket chain and a Wholesaler!!

    • Its politiical.. – Plastic carrier bags are actually a very small volume of plastics made by plastics companies — they are just bulky.

  5. Good initiative, but how many plastic manufacturers will be out of business? How many jobs will be lost? This should have started by charging for plastic bags and taxing them and not banning.

  6. When does this take effect? How do these people in government just wake up one morning and “ban” something? People need to be informed first and given time to plan for something like this to work. Else there will be chaos!

  7. Ba Bishop Edward Chomba, You have even taken too long time to make such law: Now ask the Councils to implement this law too many plastics all over the County. Even fi Chibuku (Shake shake). Well done.

  8. @ Jay Jay
    Please take this as an opportunity for your son create employment for himself! This is a good move and we got to support it. Imwe everything ma politics? You blindly support HH and dont even have a clue why you support him. In fact, I would ask all the youths to take on this great opprtunity for them to engage in paper bag carry making crusade and never to listen to empty tins like UPND and HH who in actual fact work against the youth.
    Well done President Lungu and PF. Let the innovative brains take this as a serious business venture of paper gag manufacturing. Infact, cool paper bags make shopping exciting and classy!!!!!

    • You lost me when you mentioned your silly HH and spewed insults….there is nothing innovative about this …the whole world is moving towards this direction of no plastics in Europe the charge per bag (10pence) and encourage reusable bags..you thank your Lazy man yet he has not protected local businesses against imports..this would have been a good opportunity for Mulungushi textiles.

    • Lazy bum illiterate tribal TONGA hooligan bully son of a tribal Tonga polygamist father pooping in public HAGAIN needing cynical tattoo-clad MUTINTA HICHILEMA to change his diapers HAGAIN with BoSpakata and CHARMAINE. The goodness is that the tribal corrupt thief is UNELECTABLE.

  9. Long overdue move but it should’ve been implemented in phases. Next is to ban/regulate the overgrown street vending nuisance.

  10. Banning sitikana, manje kabannigidwe!
    No doubt, the whole idea is great, but then, just dropping a bombshell on customers, Manufacturers, wholesalers, and Retailers, creates some kind of resentment towards an idea which is meant to benefit everyone. People must be given time to get educated well to allow for a smooth transition.
    Govt. could do well banning use of the “old school” single-use plastic bags, and regulate use of plastic bags made of a certain percentage of recycled material by slapping a kind of tax on that, and eventuall find a way to phase out the use of that, too. The anticipated trend would be that individual customers will have a choice to shy away this charge by bringing their own reusable bags to carry their shopping.
    Smart planning on the part of our govt. needs…

  11. Great idea , there is optional of using non woven bag which is biogradable, it decomposed with 21_ 50 day and environmental friendly. Not like plastics which take more than 200_ 300 years to decompose. Non woven bag company is based here in zambia Lusaka.food lover has already started using non woven bags on no plastic day. Think green make Zambia green and clean .for ordering of non woven bags and enquiring contact this number +260976571867.

  12. Good evening all please is we are thinking about our children we sold leve our children health worlds not full of Paulson how many people are dade this year of karela do you this about that jay some people are saying lots of people going to lose jobs how Kenya did it so please thanks to government com of good but come of to let they sold be do it last years

    • Iwe Banda ebukopo bwine ubu. An adult writing like a kinder-even a kinder is way better than you. For your information children also read our posting and if you write wrong sentences what message are you sending to the little one. UBUKOPO

  13. Good idea to ban plastic in shops. But we should be given an alternative like purchasing the plastic over the counter or go with your own plastic. It works so well in the UK. But what doesn’t work well is the forged qualification by Mr Chomba. Why he can’t be fired by the appointing authority is beyond our imagination. How can one even pick up a salary at the month end knowing that he has forged papers? The guy is a thief and a conman who has sneaked to the high table and eating with them!

  14. Brilliant move. I also suggest that authorities should constitute a body to monitor people, both motorists and pedestrians who litter. Officers should be provided with vehicles mounted with cameras to identify people littering. Once captured on camera the culprit should be sentenced to 3-6 months community services cleaning up the environment. Zambians, we are very dirty people. How can a person driving a top of the range Range Rover or Mercedes Benz throw out litter from his/her vehicle. Nokutemwa ulya in vehicles too much.

  15. very good move to ban of plastic bag in our country.i welcome this desigion and other countries also have to ban this plastics bags…

  16. This move will backfire on the banana republic the already have. We do not have the capacity to produce alternative packages, so the price of commodities will now increase because of new packages. Vokopeleza ivi.

  17. The sudden change is not user-friendly. It is better to prepare public opinion. The issue of plastic is not moral but ethical. Focus must remain employment, tax revenue and pragmatism. The idea that discussion is reactionary is also reactionary. Consult members of the public. Consult plastic companies. Consult workers. Consult consultants.

  18. The content of the headline is very different from the story, This why I believing the whole story before commenting

  19. Ban imports and production of plastics. It will not work attacking the consumer. Fires should be prevented, not fought.

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