The Ministry of Trade is having discussions with several entities regarding the sourcing of alternative products, following the imposition of a ban on the importation of Styrofoam food service products as of May 1, 2017.

Trade Officer Okolo John-Patrick says discussions are being held with SVG Containers Limited and Premium Products, which have indicated that they have alternatives, as well as with the Embassy of the Republic of China on Taiwan.

Speaking on WEFM’s Morning programme, on Thursday May 4th 2017, Mrs. John-Patrick disclosed that the government has committed to removing the Value Added Tax (VAT) charged on the alternatives for Styrofoam food service products, in a bid to lower the cost.

Although the ban on the importation of Styrofoam came into effect May 1, the Trade Officer said there is a grace period of 90 days to allow for any Styrofoam products ordered before that date to be imported.

Mrs. John Patrick further noted that businesses selling and utilising Styrofoam food products have until January 31, 2018 to dispose of any such products.

She said that after January 31, 2018, anyone caught breaking the law will be liable to a fine of EC$5,000 and or 12 months in prison.

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