SHAH ALAM: The Selangor government will not be shutting down plastic factories as it enters the 10th year of its “no plastic bag” campaign, says state executive councillor Hee Loy Sian.
At the State Assembly today, the Environment, Green Technology, Science, Technology and Innovation and Consumer Affairs Committee chairman equated Selangor’s “no plastic bag” drive to Putrajaya’s smoke-free campaign.
“There are no plans to close existing plastic factories. They are within their rights to manufacture their products.
“It is like cigarettes, we ban smoking but we still allow factories to manufacture cigarettes, so do not turn this into an issue,” he said.
He said consumers had a right to use plastic bags, but the state was only educating them to reduce their usage before a full ban on their use comes into effect in 2025.
Hee was responding to a supplementary question from Mohd Fakhrulrazi Mohd Mokhtar (PH-Meru) on why the state was allowing plastic factories to operate amid its plastic bag-free campaign.
“If we have a campaign but production (of plastics) is ongoing, there is no use,” said Fakhrulrazi.
Earlier, Hee confirmed that Selangor would enforce the ban on plastic bags in 2025 and also defended the state government’s decision to bar eateries from providing plastic straws to customers.
He said the state government was encouraging the people to use stainless steel straws and for eateries to provide paper straws.
“I would like to encourage people to do away with using straws. If we can drink hot coffee from a mug, I do not see why we cannot take cold drinks directly from the mug, too.”
On July 1, all eateries in Selangor were barred from providing plastic straws to their customers.