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Friday, 01 September 2017 - 9:28
Polythene ban and removal of tax on internet data begin today
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Production, distribution and use of polythene lunch sheets, shopping bags and rigifoam food boxes are banned from today.

Accordingly, violators of the relevant law will be subject to a Rs. 10,000 fine or a two-year imprisonment.

One year grace period had also been proposed to allow the manufacturers and users of polythene to convert into alternatives, which are biodegradable.

The Central Environment Authority has stated that that on average, on a daily basis, each person is believed to utilize and discard, 7kg of polythene and plastic into the environment. 

Products such as lunch sheets and shopping bags are the most common. It has been estimated that close to 2 million lunch sheets are used daily in Sri Lanka.

Central Environment Authority chairman Professor Lal Dharmasiri told our news team that the damage caused to the environment as a result of these non-biodegradable polythene products was immeasurable.

With this ban being implemented today, Sri Lanka joins a group of close to 40 countries worldwide, who have chosen to place a complete or partial ban on the use of polythene and plastic products.

While the number or plastic and polythene producers in Sri Lanka exceeds 1,000 and about 340,000 persons are directly or indirectly employed in this sector.

Polythene producers recently staged a protest in Colombo demanding an alternative to the ban.

The All Sri Lanka Polythene Producers’ and Recyclers’ Association Secretary, Anura Herath told our news team that an alternative should be provided to them.

Meanwhile the 10% Telecommunication tax that had been imposed on internet services is also to be removed today.

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