Ukraine has approved measures to prohibit the distribution of certain plastic bags. The prohibition will become effective on March 10, 2022.

SAFEGUARDS | HardgoodsNO. 087/21

 SG 08721 Plastic

On June 9, 2021, Ukraine published Law No. 1489-IX of June 1, 2021 to prohibit the distribution of certain plastic bags in retail and catering services. 

According to the definitions in the new law, ‘lightweight plastic bags’, ‘very lightweight plastic bags’ and ‘oxo-degradable plastic bags’ have the following meaning:

  • ‘Lightweight plastic bags’ means plastic bags with a wall thickness of 15 to 50 micrometers (microns)
  • ‘Very lightweight plastic bags’ means plastic bags with a wall thickness of less than 15 micrometers (microns)
  • ‘Oxo-degradable plastic bags’ means plastic bags consisting of polyethylene and oxo-degradable additives

The new law requires the distribution of plastic bags to be carried out exclusively on a paid basis and retail prices for these bags must not be less than the minimum prices set by Ukraine’s Cabinet of Ministers.

Biodegradable plastic bags are determined by harmonized European standards and bags that meet those requirements are to be marked accordingly. The marking applies to each plastic bag and the procedure for marking such plastic bags is approved by the Cabinet of Ministers. It is prohibited to apply the words bio (біо), biopackage (біопакет), biodegradable (біорозкладний) on plastic bags that do not meet those requirements.

There are several important (effective) dates:

  • June 10, 2021, for date of entry into force 
  • December 10, 2021, for provisions in the law, including Ukraine’s Cabinet of Ministers to adopt the necessary regulations for implementation
  • March 10, 2022 for the
    1. Prohibition of ‘very lightweight plastic bags’, ‘lightweight plastic bags’ and ‘oxo-degradable plastic bags’ (see Table 1 below)
    2.  Penalties for violation of the law 

Highlights of the new law are summarized in Table 1.

Scope of Plastic Bag

Requirement

Effective Date

  • Very lightweight plastic bags

  • Lightweight plastic bags

  • Oxo-degradable plastic bags

Prohibited1

March 10, 2022

1Exemption:

  • Biodegradable plastic bags (must meet harmonized European standards and individually marked)

  • Very lightweight plastic bags up to 225 mm wide (without side folds), up to 345 mm deep (with side folds), up to 450 mm long (with handles) for packing and/or transportation of fresh fish, meat and related products, bulk products and ice as primary packaging (valid until January 1, 2023)

Table 1

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