Fiji unveils container deposit legislation for greener nation

The Fijian government in collaboration with the Ministry of Environment and other relevant stakeholders is developing a container deposit legislation in an effort to build a more greener Fiji.

According to Fiji Broadcasting Corporation (FBC) on Wednesday, the container deposit legislation is a law that requires the collection of a monetary deposit on beverage containers at the point of sale.

A partial or a full refund can be given to consumers if they return the container to an authorized redemption centre, Xinhua news agency reported.

Fiji’s Ministry for Economy Permanent Secretary Makereta Konrote said the legislation will help reduce the careless dumping of bottles, containers and other plastic product that pollutes the environment.

“We are also developing the container deposit legislation at the Ministry of Environment and the Styrofoam plastic ban which we announced as part of the national budget will come into effect on Jan. 1, 2021,” she said.

Konrote said the Fijian government is hoping there will be a shift in market trends to more environment friendly packaging given the reduction of import duty from 32 to zero percent on certain biodegradable products.

“We also set up tax free zones to encourage the recycling of waste and the set-up of material recovery facilities to process waste into energy and other useful raw products.”

As part of Fiji’s efforts to combat climate change and preserve local biodiversity and ecosystem, a ban on Styrofoam containers will be effective next year.