Mexico City — The city of Querétaro in central Mexico has postponed the introduction of a bag ban in all commercial establishments by four months.
Legislators unanimously approved the postponement “to guarantee maximum publicity be given” to the ban and “to make sure the citizenry knows as much as possible about this measure.”
The ban, due to take effect April 1, will now become law on Aug. 1, the city government announced on its website.
However, Juan Antonio Hernández León, president of national plastics association Anipac, thinks the authorities in Querétaro are hedging and will not implement the ban in the end.
“We believe they will move towards regulation of plastic bags, rather than prohibition,” he told Plastics News in a Spanish-language telephone interview March 22.
When legislators approved the ban in December, Anipac called it a “serious mistake” and claimed legislators had ignored public and industry recommendations on the issue.
In full-page advertisements placed in newspapers in Querétaro since then, Hernández and José Anguiano Hernández, the head of major plastic bag group Inboplast, appealed to the authorities to reconsider.
While other cities in Mexico have toyed with the idea of prohibiting the use of plastic bags in stores, Querétaro would become the first large municipality in Mexico to put a ban in place.
In 2014, Eduardo de la Tijera Coeto, a former Anipac president who died in 2017, said the industry had faced 50 attempts to ban polyethylene shopping bags and polystyrene cups over the previous five years and had emerged victorious every time.