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Plastic bag charge will double to 10p and be extended to all shops, Theresa May announces


Theresa May is risking a political row with Philip Hammond by pushing ahead with plans to double the plastic bag charge and prolong it to all retailers.

Below proposals set out by the prime minister, the 5p cost on plastic baggage that has helped dramatically scale back their use could possibly be doubled to 10p and prolonged to small retailers and nook retailers.

Nevertheless it comes amid experiences the chancellor is sad with the plans, with Treasury sources briefing in opposition to them.

It’s the second subject the 2 have clashed over in current weeks, with Mr Hammond also being slapped down by Downing Street over his warnings of the dire economic impact of a no-deal Brexit.

Ms Might and her chancellor discovered themselves at loggerheads after he highlighted the hazards of crashing out of the EU as Dominic Raab, the Brexit secretary, tried to persuade the nation the federal government is satisfactorily ready to take action.

The prime minister made the announcement on the plastic bag cost as she completed her African tour in Kenya, the place she mentioned six extra nations had signed as much as a Commonwealth drive to scrub the oceans.

Ms Might mentioned: “We’ve got taken big strides to enhance the atmosphere, and the cost on plastic baggage in supermarkets and large retailers has demonstrated the distinction we are able to obtain by making small modifications to our on a regular basis habits.

“I need to go away a greener, more healthy atmosphere for future generations, however with plastic within the sea nonetheless set to treble we all know we have to do extra to raised shield our oceans and get rid of this dangerous waste.”

Theresa Might dances with youngsters on journey to South Africa

Presently solely huge retailers are affected by the 5p cost which has seen plastic bag gross sales in England’s ‘huge seven’ supermarkets drop by 86 per cent and 13 billion plastic baggage taken out of circulation within the final two years.

The session, to be launched later this 12 months, will discover the potential of rising the 5p minimal cost, doubtlessly doubling it to not less than 10p.

It’ll additionally ask whether or not to increase it to small and medium-sized enterprises which are estimated to make use of over three billion baggage annually.

However a Treasury supply mentioned earlier this week that rising the cost appears like “profiteering” and would depart customers feeling “hammered”.

Nationwide chair of the Federation of Small Enterprise Mike Cherry mentioned most small companies will again a rise within the levy, so long as they’re given time and assist to adapt.

He added: “It can be crucial, nevertheless, that authorities stops in need of introducing any kind of reporting duties that might add pointless crimson tape for smaller corporations.” 

Mr Hammond can be mentioned to have opposed different plastic taxes backed by Downing Avenue. 

If pushed by the rise within the plastic bag cost would be the newest authorities transfer on the problem together with a ban on microbeads which hurt marine life, plans to ban the sale of plastic straws, stirrers and cotton buds and introduce a deposit return scheme to drive up the recycling of drinks bottles and cans.

The Unbiased additionally broke a story last year about a new ‘plastic tax’ to stop manufacturers using unrecyclable plastics in packaging.

To spearhead additional worldwide collaboration, the prime minister additionally introduced over £61m in UK help cash to spice up international analysis, and assist nations cease plastic waste from coming into the oceans, at this 12 months’s Commonwealth Heads of Authorities Assembly.

The UK will now present a £250,000 to assist the design and supply of a Sustainable Blue Financial system Convention, in Kenya in November, whereas six African nations – Seychelles, Mauritius, Sierra Leone, Mozambique, Namibia and the Gambia – have now additionally joined the Commonwealth Clear Oceans Alliance.

The UK will present as much as a further £5m in funding to help CCOA nations looking for to take motion on plastics.


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