It was revealed in Parliament yesterday that as a result of a decision taken by the Yahapalana regime to remove the Cess Tax on plastic imports resulted in a huge environmental disaster with two billion kilos of plastics worth around Rs 549 billion during the past five years.
Responding to a question raised by SLPP – MP Mohamad Musammil, State Minister of Money & Capital Market and State Enterprise Reforms Ajith Nivard Cabraal said that between the period from 2015 to 2019 a total of 2,102,262,948 kilos of plastic had been imported to the country at a cost of Rs 549,991,640,147/= from 47 countries.
MP Musammil said that plastic products are a threat to the environment and they take around 400 years to decompose. “Discarded sachets and polythene packaging poses a huge threat to the environment,” he said. Hence, he asked the Minister if the government intends to introduce a substitute for plastic products at a time local industries have come forward with alternative solutions.
Minister Cabraal said that he welcomed the opinion of the MP and promised that he would take up the matter with his ministry officials to bring about an environmentally friendly solution.