On August 1st 2017, CEDARE, in partnership with the Ministry of Environment (MoE) and the Chamber of Chemical Industries at the Federation of Egyptian Industries (FEI) brought together a wide range of plastic bag producers along with top retailers chains and consumers. This is the seventh consultation session discussing challenges and opportunities of altering non-degradable single-use plastic bags, in the framework of the National Initiative for the Reduction of non-degradable single-use plastic bags consumption announced by H.E. Minister of Environment in June 2017. The initiative is implemented in collaboration with the UN Environment and SWITCHMED Programme funded by the European Commission.
In memory of the World Environment Day on 5 June, 2017, H. E. Dr. Khaled Fahmy, Minister of Environment, launched the Reduction of Plastic Bags Consumption National Initiative. Tuning in with the international trend of reducing plastic bags and under the slogan “NO MORE PLASTIC BAGS”, the Ministry- together with its partners- are playing a major role in the mobilization and awareness raising of the Egyptian community to contribute in sparing Mother Nature the dangers of plastic bags. The launching event was attended by a wide range of media representatives, civil society entities, CEDARE, and the ministry’s top management and executives.
CEDARE, in collaboration with the Ministry of Environment, held a roundtable meeting with the government’s officials responsible for procurement and quality on 24 May, 2017. The meeting was intended to discuss the challenges facing sustainable public procurement (SPP) and the mechanisms required to integrate it in Egypt’s governmental procurement system and further pave the way for it as a norm. Being the main buyer, the government is expected to include the green and sustainable products in the rules and regulations of governmental procurement system according to SwitchMed Demo Project implemented in cooperation with the UN Environment under the umbrella of the SwitchMed Programme & the European Commission.
On May 22nd, 2017, the second meeting of the steering committee of the SwitchMed Demo project was held back-to-back with the consultation session with the government officials. Follow up on the performance of the project throughout the past six months took place. Future activities and implementation plan were verified and agreed upon. This included the National Initiative for the Reduction of Plastic Bags Consumption, scheduled to be launched in June, 2017.
As the governmental sector is a key player in policy-making and regulating consumption patterns, another consultation session was jointly organized by CEDARE and the Ministry of Environment, on May 22nd, 2017, in a series of consecutive sessions as part of the agenda of SwitchMed Demo Reduction of Plastic Bags Consumption Project, in partnership with the UN Environment. The consultation session was attended by several governmental authorities including the Chamber of Chemical Industries at the Federation of Egyptian Industries, the Directorate of Environmental Safety at the Ministry of Higher Education, the Directorate of Environmental Monitoring at the Ministry of Health & Population, and Ministry of Water Resources & Irrigation.
On December 6th, 2016, another new resourceful initiative was launched adding to an extensive successful partnership between the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), the Egyptian Ministry of Environment (MOE) & the Centre for Development and Environment for the Arab Region & Europe (CEDARE). The three partners have launched two demonstration Projects namely; "Mainstreaming Sustainable & Green Public Procurement" Project and "Reduction of Plastic Bags Consumption" Project. A press conference attended by Dr. Iyad Abumoghli, Regional Director and Representative for the UNEP Regional Office for West Asia (ROWA), Eng. Ahmed Abul Seoud, EEAA’s Chief Executive Officer, and Dr. Hossam Allam, Regional Director of CEDARE’s Sustainable Growth Programme, was conducted to announce the details of each project.