Belarus might ban all types of disposable plastic tableware in public catering facilities in 2023, Belarus’ Deputy Minister of Natural Resources and Environmental Protection Aleksandr Korbut said at a press conference on 17 February, BelTA has learned.
“An instantaneous full ban on the use of single-use plastic tableware is out of question: it will be a gradual transition, so that sectors and business have time to prepare. As from 1 January 2021, only some types of such tableware will be banned. Enterprises will be given time to reorganize their manufacturing process. A total ban is expected to come into force in 2023,” Aleksandr Korbut said.
As from 1 January 2021, Belarus will introduce ban on the use and sale of disposable plastic tableware in public catering facilities. The Belarusian Ministry of Antimonopoly Regulation and Trade drafted an appropriate resolution and will compile the list of tableware to fall under the ban. The list is expected to include containers, boxes, trays, lunchboxes, stirring rods, glasses, dishes, and cups that are fully or partially made from polyvinyl chloride and polystyrene. The use of single-use plastic caps for glasses, cutlery, and straws in public catering outlets will still be allowed. “Around 200 million of disposable tableware is used in Belarus annually, including 70 million glasses, 23 million spoons, 20 million forks, 19 million knives, and other types of tableware,” Aleksandr Korbut noted.
Belarus produces 280,000 tonnes of polymer waste a year (some 25kg of polymer waste per capita). Package accounts for 140,000 tonnes of this amount. In 2019 Belarus collected for recycling just 35% of the total amount of polymer waste.