The Jakarta Post
The government will impose duties on plastic bags to reduce waste.
The Finance Ministry’s Customs and Excise Directorate General said it would slap a plastic bag duty of Rp 200 (US 1.4 cents) per sheet.
“The duty has considered many factors,” Heru Pambudi, the customs and excise director general, told reporters at the House of Representatives building on Tuesday.
“[The duty] could not be too high or too low as we need to balance many factors,” he added.
Earlier that day, the ministry held a hearing with House Commission XI overseeing finance on plastic bag duties. At the hearing, Minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati said that the duty on plastic bags will be set at Rp 30,000 per kilogram, assuming that a kilogram of plastic bags contains 150 sheets. Hence, plastic bags will cost Rp 450 to Rp 500 per sheet after duties. The imposition of duties on plastic bags is expected to cause inflation of 0.045 percent.
Heru said the ministry had paid attention to industry players, people's purchasing power, manpower and the environment. He said the duties could not be set too high because it would disrupt industries.
Heru added that the imposition aims to reduce plastic consumption, especially bags made from resin or non-recyclable materials. In addition, the government plans to set lower rates for recyclable plastics.
Indonesia is not the only country to impose duties on plastic bags. Denmark, South Africa, Taiwan, Ireland and Malaysia have imposed duties of Rp 40,000 to Rp 100,000 per kilogram of plastic bags. (asp)