Umm Al Quwain has announced plans to ban single-use plastic bags in the emirate.
As of January 1 next year, sales outlets in the emirate will impose a 25 fils charge on all single-use plastic bags and encourage customers to replace them with reusable bags, the executive council announced on Thursday.
Authorities said the tariff is being placed on single-use plastic bags ahead of a complete ban on their use in Umm Al Quwain.
The emirate’s municipality will be responsible for developing plans and policies to enforce the decision and submit them to Umm Al Quwain council for approval.
Policies need to identify single-use plastic bags that could be exempt from the ban.
They are also required to introduce educational and awareness-raising programmes on the importance of using sustainable alternatives to plastic.
The council said its decision aims to encourage public behaviour to preserve the environment, supporting its efforts towards achieving sustainable economic development strategies.
Last August, Sharjah introduced a levy of 25 fils on all single-use plastic bags from October 1 this year, ahead of a ban from January 1, 2024.
Dubai introduced a similar 25 fils charge for single-use plastic bags on July 1 and said it would ban them completely from 2024. Abu Dhabi introduced a ban on single-use plastic bags on June 1 this year.
The country is moving to protect the environment and address the high rate of plastic use across the UAE, which was about four times the global average.
According to figures shared by the World Government Summit in February 2019, 11 billion plastic bags are used in the Emirates each year.