Malawi’s paramount court has ruled in favour of a ban on plastic, upholding a 2015 government bar on producing, distributing and importing thin single-use plastics.

This type of plastic is typically used in packaging and wrapping.

In a judgement handed down last month, a panel of the Supreme Court of Appeal threw out a challenge by plastic manufacturers to stop a ban introduced four years ago.

At least a dozen companies had obtained an injunction against implementing the ban, arguing that it infringed on their business rights.

But the court this week ruled that plastics measuring less than 60 microns (60 millionths of a metre) were an environmental hazard as they take a long time to decompose despite their thinness.

The continued use of the plastics will from now on attract fines, closure of factories and seizure of the prohibited products, said the court.

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