MUSCAT: Oman Air, the National Carrier of the Sultanate of Oman, issued a travel advisory to passengers flying to Tanzanian destinations of Dar Es Salaam and Zanzibar in the wake of the Tanzanian government’s ban on plastic, from 1st June onwards. All travelllers flying to these destinations are informed of the ban on plastic by the Tanzanian government.
The Tanzanian government has issued a notice saying all plastic carrier bags will be prohibited from being “imported, exported, manufactured, sold, stored, supplied and used in mainland Tanzania”. The notice further said: “The government does not intend for visitors to Tanzania to find their stay unpleasant as we enforce the ban. However, the government expects that, in appreciation of the imperative to protect the environment and keep our country clean and beautiful, our visitors will accept minor inconveniences resulting from this.”
The ban applies to all plastic carrier bags, regardless of their thickness. However, plastic or plastic packaging for medical services, industrial products, construction industry, agricultural sector, foodstuff, sanitary and waste management are not prohibited. Visitors to Tanzania are advised to avoid carrying plastic bags or packing plastic carrier bags or items in plastic carrier bags in the suitcase or hand luggage before embarking on a visit to this country. A special desk will be designated at all entry points for surrender of plastic bags that visitors maybe bringing to Tanzania.
Plastic carrier items known as Ziploc bags that are specifically used to carry toiletries will be permitted as they are expected to remain in the permanent possession of visitors and are not expected to be disposed of in the country.
To date, 34 African countries have legislated to control plastic bag usage through bans or taxes. The ban effective from June1st will go into force throughout the country and tourists are being warmed not to carry them as it might attract hefty fines and penalties.
Oman Air operates seven flights per week to Zanzibar and Dar Es Salaam in Tanzania.