A consumer group has suggested tax incentives for companies and consumers as part of efforts to reduce plastic waste, especially those targeted at research and development (R&D) in the private sector.

Tarmizi Anuwar, the Malaysian representative of the Washington-based Consumer Choice Centre, said that emphasis on private sector R&D could lead to the production of cheaper sustainable alternatives.

“Incentives do not necessarily mean grants. If a company or the private sector invests in R&D, the government should give tax exemptions or at least reduce taxes for them,” he told FMT.

Tarmizi said these measures should be complemented by reduced trade barriers for the import of alternatives as well as reduced bureaucracy, streamlining patent processes for sustainable products.

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