Thailand to ban single-use plastics from national parks

The Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation, Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment of Thailand bans single-use plastics from national parks for the conservation of natural resources. The Notification of the Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation on the Prohibition of Single-use Plastics from National Parks was published in the Royal Gazette on 5 April 2022 by virtue of the National Park Act, B.E. 2562 (2019).

The notification prohibits bringing and using containers made of foam and single-use plastics including:

• plastic bags with a thickness of less than 36 microns

• plastic food containers

• single-use plastic cups

• plastic straws

• plastic cutlery

The ban has been effective since 6 April 2022 and a fine of up to 100,000 baht would be applied for violation. Reportedly, plastic bags are considered a threat to wildlife as they have been found in the feces of elephants and a body of dead deer.


Scotland’s ban on single use plastics

From 1 June 2022, it will be unlawful to manufacture or supply some single use plastic items in the course of business. We take a further look at what this means.

Plastic plates, straws, cutlery, stirrers, etc. will be banned from 1 June 2022 in Scotland
Plastic plates, straws, cutlery, stirrers, etc. will be banned from 1 June 2022 in Scotland

Following on from the commitments made at COP26, the Scottish Government announced new Regulations that will come into force on 1 June 2022, banning some single use plastic items in Scotland. The new Regulations which have been laid before the Scottish Parliament will make it unlawful to manufacture and supply any of the single use items below in the course of business, both online and in-store:

  • Plastic cutlery (such as forks, knives, spoons and chopsticks);
  • Plastic plates;
  • Plastic straws and beverage stirrers;
  • Expanded polystyrene beverage cups, including their covers and lids; and
  • Expanded polystyrene beverage containers.

The new Regulations apply to items supplied for free and those that are charged for.

It will be an offence for businesses in Scotland to supply these items to other businesses and to individuals, regardless of where those businesses or individuals are located.  Businesses based outside of Scotland will commit an offence if they supply such items to customers in Scotland.

A person or a business found in breach of the new Regulations may face a fine of up to £5000.


The Regulations provide for some exemptions for single use plastic straws. These exemptions cover where plastic straws are used as a medical device, for a medical purpose, or used in the course of a support service which provides personal care or support. Therefore, plastic straws will be available for purchase at pharmacies and certain other establishments such as care homes, schools, prisons and childcare centres will still be allowed to supply them.

Furthermore, the Regulations allow that hospitality venues may supply single use plastic straws for immediate consumption of food or drink, as long as they are not kept in a place visible to customers and the venue does not offer or provide them to customers, unless the customer specifically requests them.

Single use plastic balloon sticks can be used for professional or industrial purposes where they are used for decoration and not handed out to consumers.


A complete elimination of single use plastics in India from 2022

After phasing out super thin single use plastics from October 1, the government of India is now working on strategies to eliminate ‘one-time use plastics’ entirely from the system.

The government has enacted the Plastic Waste Management Amendment Rules 2021 (PWMA) under which the manufacture, import, stocking, distribution, sale and use of several items categorized as single use plastics products have been banned. These products include: ear buds with plastic sticks, plastic sticks for balloons, plastic flags, candy sticks, ice cream sticks and polystyrene (thermocol) for decoration. Apart from these items, plates, cups, glasses, cutlery such as forks, spoons, knives, straw, trays, wrapping or packing films around sweet boxes, invitation cards, and cigarette packets, plastic or PVC (polyvinyl chloride) banners less than 100 microns and stirrers have also been banned.

To implement the law in a staggered manner, the government has increased the mandatory requirement of the thickness of plastics carry bags from 50 microns to 75 microns with effect from September 2021, and further to 120 microns with effect from December 31, 2022. The PWMA also prohibits dealing in polystyrene and expanded polystyrene commodities.

Moreover, the government has been taking measures for awareness generation towards elimination of single use plastics and effective implementation of Plastic Waste Management Rule. In order to achieve the targeted goal, the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change has organized awareness campaign on single use plastics and also a pan India essay writing competition on the theme for spreading awareness amongst school students in the country.

Meanwhile, based on a Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) study, it is estimated that 60 per cent of the total plastics waste generated in the country, is collected and recycled.

“Consumers are getting increasingly aware of the use of single use plastics. There has been a sharp decline in the consumption of single use plastics as consumers have shifted to other alternatives. Hence, the ban on single use plastics is unlikely to have a major impact. A strict enforcement of law, however, is needed,” said Chintan Sanghvi, Director, Luckystar International, a city-based plastics recycler, to Polymerupdate.

Following the Centre’s notification, 34 states and Union Territories across the country have issued notifications / orders, as per their enactments, to introduce regulations pertaining to complete or partial ban on plastic carry bags and identified single use plastic items. The Centre has asked states and Union Territories to constitute a special task force under the chairmanship of the Chief Secretary / Administrator, as the case may be, for elimination of single use plastics.

Following the instruction from the Centre, the Andaman and Nicobar Islands Administrator has constituted the special task force. A national level task force has also been constituted by the Ministry for taking coordinated efforts to eliminate identified single use plastic items and effective implementation of rules.

Disappearing plastic bags: Vancouver to join other B.C. cities banning them in 2022

Vancouver is set to ban single-use plastic bags starting in 2022 and join nine other cities in B.C. with similar bans

Starting Jan. 1, a new Vancouver bylaw means retailers can no longer provide customers with single-use plastic bags. jpg
Starting Jan. 1, a new Vancouver bylaw means retailers can no longer provide customers with single-use plastic bags. jpg

Shoppers will have no choice but to change their behaviour in 2022 when a ban on single-use plastic bags comes into effect in Vancouver.

Starting Jan. 1, a new city bylaw means retailers can no longer provide customers with single-use plastic bags. Instead, they have to charge a minimum of 15 cents for paper bags and $1 for reusable bags. Single-use cups will cost 25 cents.

Laura Hardman, director of Plastic Free Oceans at Ocean Wise Conservation Association, admitted the ban means people will have to change their behaviour.

Hardman said while the shift may be inconvenient for some, talking about the kind of bags we use at the grocery store checkout is the kind of environmental conversation everyone needs to have.

“If we keep trying to live the same lifestyle where we do know we’re over-consuming and producing too much waste, we’re not going to have the impact we want and live in harmony with the environment,” she said.

Changing behaviour may be as simple as grabbing a canvas bag whenever you go shopping. For others, it can mean putting groceries back in their shopping cart after checkout and then transferring them into boxes in the trunk of their car.

Vancouver’s ban on single-use plastics is part of much larger national and international efforts to eliminate plastic waste from the environment.

Vancouver joins nine other cities in B.C., including Surrey and Richmond in the region, which have implemented similar bans on single-use plastics such as bags.

Across Canada, more than 70 cities have passed similar bans, as have Nova Scotia and PEI.

Jens Allerdissen, the manager at Mother Nature’s Market and Deli in Victoria, said his store hasn’t used plastic bags since Victoria became the first in B.C. to ban single-use plastics in 2018 — even though legal challenges meant the ban didn’t come into full legal effect until April of this year.

He said most customers have accepted the ban, although he admitted that at a store that focuses on organic foods there is probably a higher awareness of, and support for, not littering with plastic than at other retailers.

“That being said, sometimes customers are not happy. They say, ‘Why would I need to pay 15 cents for a bag?’” Allerdissen said. “We’ve always been able to reason and explain why.”

He estimated that about 50 per cent of customers bring their own bags.

“About the single-use plastic ban — make it happen as quickly as possible, everywhere.”

Statistics from Ocean Wise, a Vancouver-based global conservation group, estimate that between five to 13 million tonnes a year of plastics end up as waste in the world’s oceans.

As local governments move to ban single-use plastics, the federal government is proposing a national ban, to join 35 other countries that have instituted similar bans on single-use plastics such as cutlery and six-pack rings. The federal ban isn’t expected to come into effect until sometime next year.

Bob Masterson, president and CEO of the Chemistry Industry Association of Canada based in Ottawa, said B.C. has created “the most effective recycling system anywhere in North America.”

He estimated that about 50 per cent of post-consumer packaging is recycled in B.C. — about five times the national average.

“One of the main reasons why that is so effective is that you now have a harmonized approach to recycling across the entire province,” he said. “People know whether they’re at work, play or at home, they recycle the same things in the same way.”

He said the industry believes that a ban should apply provincially or nationally rather than on a city-by-city basis.

“We would encourage municipalities to take a deep breath for another year so the federal regulations will be in place.”

He acknowledged that the plastic industry has a waste problem.

“How do we transition the rest of the country to the B.C. model and even go further?

“You’ve done something great in B.C. as a model for the rest of the country. That’s where our energy is focused.”


An Phat Bioplastics Is In The List Of Vietnam’s 500 Fastest Growing Enterprises In 2022

This is the seventh consecutive time for An Phat Bioplastics – a subsidiary of An Phat Holdings in the FAST500 Ranking – Top 500 fastest growing enterprises in Vietnam, according to the report of Vietnam Report Joint Stock Company (Vietnam Report).

The FAST500 are ranked based on the research results and evaluation of the Compounded Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) in terms of revenue and business performance. In addition, some other criteria such as total assets, total employees, profit after tax and social medial reputation are also used as a supporting factor to determine the size and position of the enterprise in the industry.

According to this year’s ranking, An Phat Bioplastics continues to maintain its top position of the fastest growing enterprises in Vietnam.

Lotte to develop seawater-degradable PHA-material

Lotte Chemical aims to complete the development of petrochemical-based PHA production technology and commercialize it by 2023.

 South Korea’s Lotte Chemical Corp. (Seoul) plans to develop a decomposable bioplastic material in seawater for production based on petrochemicals for the first time in the global industry to cut carbon emissions.

Lotte Chemical recently said that it will develop polyhydroxyalkanoates (PHA), an eco-friendly bioplastic material that degrades 100 % in seawater with a target of commercialization by 2023. The petrochemical unit of Lotte Group is conducting research on the material with a local university in Seoul supported by the Ministry of Science and ICT as well as the National Research Foundation of Korea.

PHA, used in packaging materials, medical products, and cosmetics containers, is currently produced only with microorganisms. It is hard to secure raw materials, resulting in low outputs of PHA and higher prices, since microorganisms, which need processes such as cultivation and fermentation, are used for production.

The commercialization of PHA production based on petrochemicals will allow mass production with petrochemical and biomass raw materials that are easy to procure, Lotte said. That will improve price competitiveness. Demand for biodegradable plastic materials continued to grow with consumption expected to more than double to 2 million tonnes in 2026 from 970,000 tonnes in 2020, said Lotte, citing an industrial forecast.

Earlier this month, Lotte unveiled a plan to invest USD 502.4 million in eco-friendly materials plants at one of its domestic petrochemical complexes.


South Korea annouced a detailed plan to reduce plastic waste and increase the use of bioplastics by 2050

Workers sort plastic waste at a recycling center in Busan, 453 km southeast of Seoul, on Dec. 24, 2020. (Yonhap)
Workers sort plastic waste at a recycling center in Busan, 453 km southeast of Seoul, on Dec. 24, 2020. (Yonhap)

South Korea’s The Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy and the Ministry of Environment announced a plan on Dec. 30 to increase the use of mixed plastics and bioplastics and reduce the use of petroleum-based plastics.

According to the plan, 15 percent of plastics for industrial use and 20 percent of those for non-industrial use will be replaced with the alternative materials by 2030. The targets for 2050 are 45 percent and 100 percent, respectively.

Starting from next month, recyclable bioplastics with the same physical and chemical properties as petroleum-based plastics are subject to separate disposal with Bio HDPE, Bio LDPE, Bio PP and Bio PS marks.

The government is planning to prepare a legal basis for waste charge exemption regarding bioplastics with environmental labeling certification, and the exemption is scheduled for 2023. The biomass content requirement for the certification is planned to be raised from 20 percent to 50 percent from this year to 2030.

Starting from 2023, recyclable raw materials must be used by plastic manufacturers as well as paper, glass and steel manufacturers. In the case of plastic PET manufacturers, the use must reach at least 30 percent by 2030.

Source: Business Korea

Ambassador of Italia to Vietnam hopes to expand cooperation opportunities with An Phat Holdings

On February 16, in Hai Duong, the Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary Ambassador of Italy to Vietnam and the delegation of the Italian Embassy and the leaders of Hai Duong province had a meeting with An Phat Holdings (APH) at the factory of An Phat Bioplastics.

The meeting was attended by Mr. Antonio Alessandro the Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary Ambassador of Italy to Vietnam, Mr. Michele D’Ercole – Chairman of Italian Chamber of commerce in Vietnam (ICHAM), Mr. Tran Thanh Quyet – Director of non-governmental organization of ICHAM. On Hai Duong side, there were Mr. Pham Xuan Thang – Member of the Party Central Committee, Secretary of the Provincial Party Committee, Chairman of the Provincial People’s Council; Mr. Nguyen Minh Hung – Member of the Provincial People’s Committee, Vice Chairman of the Provincial People’s Committee, representatives of leaders of the Office of the Provincial Party Committee, Office of the Provincial People’s Committee, and Directors of the Departments sch as: Departments of Planning and Investment, Industry and Trade, Science & Technology, Agriculture & Rural Development; Culture, Sports & Tourism, Education & Training; Management Boards of Provincial Industrial Parks. Welcoming the delegation, there were Mr. Dinh Xuan Cuong – Vice Chairman, General Director of APH and the entire senior management board.

The meeting overview

At the meeting, Mr Dinh Xuan Cuong pointed about An Phat Holdings’ strengths in manufacturing high-tech plastic products, raw materials and bioplastic decomposition products, supporting industries and industrial real estate. With 20 years of development, APH is a closed partner of domestic and foreign enterprises. APH’s long-term partners are located in many countries around the world, especially in Europe with the prominent being Italy and France. “Currently, we are one of the suppliers of high-tech plastic components for large corporations such as Samsung, Honda, Toyota and Piaggio”, said Mr. Cuong.

An Phat Holdings is also promoting the development of industrial real estate with two industrial parks An Phat Complex (100% occupied) and An Phat 1 (under the ground completion). These are the strengths for An Phat Holdings to boost production and cooperate with many domestic and foreign enterprises.

Mr. Antonio Alessandro – Ambassador of Italy to Vietnam expect APH share experiences on attracting FDI, investing in industrial zones, producing biodegradable and automated plastic products

At the meeting, Mr Antonio Alessandro asked some questions about the process of business strategy towards biodegradable plastic products of APH. “In Italy today, biodegradable plastic is considered the only solution to reduce plastic waste. Especially, after participating in the 26th Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP26), we understand the importance of biodegradable plastics for sustainable development,” said Antonio Alessandro.

Besides, with the desire to support Italian businesses to invest in Vietnam, Mr. Antonio Alessandro looks forward to An Phat Holdings sharing about the benefits of An Phat Complex and An Phat 1 industrial zones as well as developing automation lines.

To answer those question, Mr. Dinh Xuan Cuong said that An Phat Holdings had seen the trend of plastic products and decided to change its strategy. Focusing on developing biodegradable plastic is the result after many discussions with foreign partners, researching the world market. It was also the story of the An Phat Holdings development about 7 years ago”, Mr. Dinh Xuan Cuong emphasized.

Mr. Dinh Xuan Cuong, Vice President, General Director of APH talked about the APH’s development strategy for biodegradable plastic materials & products

Regarding industrial real estate, Mr. Pham Van Tuan – Deputy General Director of APH said, the industrial zones of An Phat Holdings, like other industrial zones in Hai Duong Province, still support businesses in tax such as tax exemption for the first 2 years. Either more, An Phat Complex or An Phat 1 are not merely industrial parks for leasing land, but also include service and residential areas to create an industrial park ecosystem. “We want to attract businesses not only to rent factories but also to support connection and supply chain,” said Mr. Tuan.

Sharing more about the strengths of industrial zones, Mr. Cuong said, like industrial real estate invested by Singapore and Japan enterprises, APH provides high-quality services but with more competitive costs, attractive warehouse prices as well as competitive prices. “The importance is that we have different supply businesses to support each one to invest to expand production, most notably to support Piaggio”, Mr. Cuong said.

The Delegation took photos

After the meeting, Mr. Antonio Alessandro said that, with the experience and the position of TOP 100 largest private enterprises in Vietnam, An Phat Holdings prove experience and is a partner to learn and invest in the future.

In order to increase cooperation efficiency, Mr. Pham Xuan Thang – Secretary of the Provincial Party Committee, Chairman of the Provincial People’s Council of Hai Duong Province suggested that the Italian Embassy and Hai Duong province as well as An Phat Holdings together connect to attract more Italian FDI enterprises invest in Hai Duong province.

An Phat Holdings to be honored with Vietnam Gold Star Award

On 14th February 2022, the Organizing Board of the Vietnam Gold Star Award announced that An Phat Holdings had won this prestigious award granted by the Vietnam Youth Federation Central Committee and  Viet Nam Young Entrepreneurs’ Association.

The Vietnam Gold Star Award 2021 attracted the participation of hundreds of businesses in many different industries. An Phat Holdings excellently fulfilled strict criteria in terms of revenue, profit, product competitiveness, social contribution activities, etc. to enter the Top 100 typical enterprises of the award.

This is the fifth time An Phat Holdings and its subsidiaries is honored with this award. Along with other major awards such as the National Quality Award, the Asia Pacific Enterprise Awards (APEA), the ASEAN Business Award (ABA), etc. the Vietnam Gold Star Award is conclusive proof of our efforts to become a leading eco-friendly and high-tech plastic enterprise in Southeast Asia. This is also an affirmation of the prestige and brand of An Phat Holdings in the domestic and international markets.

It is expected that An Phat Holdings will connect with American corporates to invest to Hai Duong province in 2022

Today, Hai Duong province’s leaders and An Phat Holdings’ Board of Directors have recently had a meeting to encourage the production and activities of the company at An Phat Bioplastics JSC. ( An Phat Bioplastics). The meeting was attended by Mr. Pham Xuan Thang – Member of the Party Central Committee, Secretary of the Provincial Party Committee, Chairman of the Provincial People’s Council, Mr. Le Van Hieu – Standing Deputy Secretary of the Provincial Party Committee, Head of the Provincial National Assembly Delegation, Mr. Trieu The Hung – Deputy Secretary of the Provincial Party Committee – Chairman of the Provincial People’s Committee and leaders of Hai Duong Province’s departments and agencies. Welcoming the delegation, on An Phat Holdings’ side, there were Mr. Pham Anh Duong – Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Company and the entire senior management board.

At the meeting, Mr. Thang expressed the desire that An Phat Holdings will focus all resources on developing environmentally friendly plastic products. “I was very impressed with the Company’s development strategy toward environmentally friendly products at the meeting of the leaders of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Hai Duong province’s Leaders with the Company’s BODs at the end of 2021. I hope that An Phat Holdings will always be consistent with this green development goal, especially since Vietnam has signed the COP 26 Agreement. This is an opportunity to accelerate progress and move towards a stronger development goal.” emphasized Mr. Thang.

Ông Phạm Xuân Thăng rất kỳ vọng, An Phát Holdings sẽ trở thành cầu nối kết nối doanh nghiệp Hoa Kỳ đầu tư vào tỉnh Hải Dương
Mr. Pham Xuan Thang hopes that An Phat Holdings will become a bridge connecting American corporates to invest in Hai Duong province.

Besides, Mr. Thang also said that, in 2022, Hai Duong Province determine to grow its economy and has planned to attract FDI in the 5 years. Hai Duong Province has also connected to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to organize a trade promotion conference to attract FDI, especially from USA. “An Phat Holdings has the experience of working and connection with USA enterprises. I hope that An Phat Holdings will be the connection rope in the future”.

With the goal of increasing investment, Hai Duong Province will focus its resources on 3 aspects: industrial real estate, human resource and ecological system – services. With the strength in production and industrial real estate, An Phat Holdings is expected to create big bang, contribute to the overall development of Hai Duong province.

Ông Phạm Ánh Dương – Chủ tich HĐQT Tập đoàn An Phát Holdings cho biết, sẽ nỗ lực thực hiện mong muốn của Lãnh đạo tỉnh Hải Dương – trở thành cầu nối doanh nghiệp Hoa Kỳ đầu tư vào tỉnh Hải Dương
Chairman of An Phat Holdings – Mr. Pham Anh Duong said, An Phat Holdings will try hard to to fulfill the wishes of the leaders of Hai Duong province and complete the growth plan in 2022.

Also at the meeting, the delegation of Hai Duong Province directly explored the production line and encouraged the working spirit of the employees of An Phat Xanh Plastic Joint Stock Company (An Phat Bioplastics).

Mr. Pham Anh Duong – Chairman of An Phat Holdings’ Board of Directors shared that the Company will try harder to fulfill the desires of Hai Duong province’s Leaders – becoming a bridge connecting American corporates to invest in Hai Duong province.

Other activities at the meeting:

Lãnh đạo tỉnh Hải Dương trao quà lưu niệm cho Lãnh đạo Tập đoàn An Phát Holdings nhân dịp năm mới
On the occasion of the Lunar New Year, Leaders of Hai Duong province gave souvenirs to An Phat Holdings’ BODs.
Lãnh đạo tỉnh Hải Dương và Lãnh đạo Tập đoàn An Phát Holdings chụp ảnh lưu niệm
Leaders of Hai Duong province and Leaders of An Phat Holdings took pictures.

Lãnh đạo tỉnh Hải Dương động viên tinh thần làm việc của CBNV Tập đoàn
Leaders of Hai Duong province encourage the working spirits of An Phat Holdings’ employees.