Over the past few years, a number of measures were adopted to combat the negative effects plastic waste is having on the environment and on human health. To name a few, a deposit refund scheme was introduced in Malta in 2022, the supply of lightweight plastic carrier bags for distribution, consumption, or use was prohibited as from 2022, and as from 2021 the placing on the market certain the single-use plastic products – such as plastic straws, food containers made from expanded polystyrene, beverage containers/cups made of expanded polystyrene – was banned.

To continue tackling the wasteful use of plastic and the negative impact this is having on the environment, further measures are coming into play:

  • This year, the prohibition on the making available of single-use plastic beverage containers having a capacity of up to three litres on the Maltese market will come into force. This prohibition does, however, exempt single-use plastic beverage containers having a capacity of up to three litres from such a prohibition where the caps and lids of such beverage containers remain attached to the container during the latter’s intended use stage. Any person that breaches this prohibition will, on conviction, be liable to a fine and will be ordered to pay for any expenses incurred by the competent authorities as a result of such an offence.
  • As from 2025, beverage bottles having a capacity of up to 3 which are manufactured from PET must contain at least 25% recycled plastic.
  • Circular Economy Malta (‘CE Malta’) – the local agency that aims to facilitate the transition to a circular economy – has recently announced its ‘Bring Your Own Container Initiative’. The aim of this initiative is to incentivise individuals to bring their own, reusable containers when purchasing products. The initiative will not be limited to just food products – customers may use their own, reusable containers even when purchasing items such as cleaning products.
  • The European Commission had tabled a draft Regulation on packaging and packaging waste back in November 2022 to review the Packaging and Packaging Waste Directive. On the 4 March 2024, the Council and European Parliament reached a provisional agreement on the proposal for the packaging and packaging waste regulation.

We will continue monitoring initiatives – legal or otherwise – to combat plastic waste and we will publish horizon scanners accordingly.

This document does not purport to give legal, financial or tax advice. Should you require further information or legal assistance, please do not hesitate to contact Dr Laura Spiteri.



This article was originally published on the Mamo TCV Advocates website on the 7th March 2024.

You can find it here https://www.mamotcv.com/insights/plastic-waste-whats-on-the-horizon/