Thailand is following in the footsteps of Vietnam and Malaysia when it comes to making policies that address the issue of foreign plastic scraps. This is only part of the measure being carried out to protect the country’s natural resources and tourist spots which is one the top reasons why tourists are flocking to the kingdom. Educational institutions such as international school in Bangkok are also in support of this proposal.
According to the Department of Industrial Works of Thailand, there are already orders to stop the import of related items but they will have to wait two years to cease all related operations because the import licenses will have expire by then. This is why 2021 is set to be the year that Thailand will prohibit imports of plastic wastes into the country.
Thailand is not the first country in Southeast Asia to implement such policy. There is an alarming increase in plastic scraps that were used mainly by the food and beverage industry.
Department of Industrial Works’ deputy director of Thailand, Banjong Sukreet, said that ever since China decided to ban plastic, the amount that is entering the country is staggering therefore they are planning to ban it in a matter of two years.
China announced at the start of the year that it will no longer accept plastic waste imports. Since then, Southeast Asian nations have been the target of developed countries such as Germany, United Kingdom and the United States when it comes to dumping their wastes.
Science Advances, a study about the import ban mandated by China, most of the plastic scraps being dumped are packaging used in the food and beverage industry, single-use plastics and tobacco packaging. This comprises around 61 per cent of the beach liter found all over the world.
Study authors stated that 89 per cent of the exports in history are composed of polymer materials that are most commonly used in manufacturing single-use plastic which is vital in food packaging. According to estimates, 111 million metric tons of plastic scraps will be affected until 2030 by the new policy imposed by China.This amount is equivalent to almost half or 47 per cent of total plastic waste that were imported internationally since 1988 which is the same time the report started.
Thailand is adamant to reverse the effects of pollution and protect the citizens of the country including students at the international Pschool in Bangkok as well as various tourist destinations since tourism is a big international school in Bangkok contributor to the country’s economy.