The Kenyan Government has launched a ban on the use of plastic carrier and flat bags for commercial and household packaging, as part of efforts to reduce plastic pollution in the country.
The ban has commenced after a six-month grace period to allow for necessary adjustments and compliance checks amongst manufacturers and retailers.
Following the ban, any person found to manufacture, sell or carrying plastic bags can face a fine of up to $40,000 or imprisonment for up to four years.
Plastic bags have already been banned in several other African countries, including Rwanda, Mauritania and Eritrea.
The government's successful ban on plastic bags follows two previous attempts to do so in the last ten years.
Last week, an appeal against the ban was rejected by the court, facilitating the complete ban on plastic bags, reported BBC.
The government is encouraging plastic bag manufacturers to invest in the production of alternative bags made of non-plastic materials, such as jute, papyrus, cloth, canvas and woven polypropylene plastic bags.
Kenya Association of Manufacturers president Samuel Matonda predicted that the ban will result in the loss of more than 60,000 jobs and force nearly 176 manufacturers to close down.