Seychelles Chamber Of Commerce & Industry
The Seychelles Chamber of Commerce & Industry would like to express its views regarding the SCR2 tax to be levied on glass bottles effective 01 July 2018. Whilst, we recognize that one of the main contributing factors towards the introduction of this levy is pertaining to the current state of our land fill, we urge that the Government considers these views below and adopt further consultation with the private sector before announcing its final decision.
From an environmental point of view, plastic bottles are not the way moving forward into the future – glass bottles are! The artificial toxins from degrading plastics can leach into soil, affecting underground water reserves, farmland and our oceans (including the fish that we consume).
While glass bottles are comparably heavier and more difficult to transport, they hold more benefits for the environment and our health in the long run. We have to look towards what is best for us and our children, glass is the answer, and plastic is the problem.
In Seychelles some of our imported fruit juices and other drinks come in glass bottles. By making it more expensive to the consumers, it will in effect be pushing up the cost of living for the Seychellois families. This will be a counter intuitive practice to combat the cost of living.
Following consultation with some of our members the SCCI recommends the following:
Launch urgent consultations on a deposit scheme that could see a refundable charge added to the cost of ALL single-use glass, plastic, steel and aluminium bottles and cans in an effort to reduce waste and increase recycling. Whilst this does in effect increase the cost of goods sold it does provide the consumers with the option of reclaiming the extra costs.
We urge the Government to review the current 10 year plan it has for waste management especially reviewing current timescales of implementation for items such as the sorting and recycling platforms announced recently. The concept of exportation of our sorted waste is something that needs more immediate attention.
If there’s one thing on which all waste experts will agree it’s that the linear make-use-dispose model on which we built our society needs to be revised immediately. To weave our economic system into one harmonious, never-ending cycle of recycling and reuse is no easy task. We have to make a start and we at the SCCI support the concept of recycling through an education campaign and start considering the notion of recycling and for both private and businesses to start sorting out waste. We urge all stakeholders to sit down together to formulate a strategy with its implementation plans of the future of Waste.
The SCCI is currently engaging with Land Waste Management Agency for better collaborative discussions going forward.
As a means to protecting our environment and avoid a potential increase in the cost of living, SCCI is of the view that the new measure introduced should be reconsidered as currently it feels that the increase of prices before everything is in place to recycle looks like the private sector and consumers will be paying extra for a while so that the Government can get the extra revenue to buy all the gear needed.