Tanzania Bans Plastic Bags

Tanzania Bans Plastic Bags

It is not clear if the new ban includes plastic-based wrapping material for household goods, but better to check with our Dar es Salaam office before enveloping anything in bubble wrap!  Neither is it clear if the new rule will further increase customs inspections of imported household and personal effects. Read on….


The Government of Tanzania wishes to make an official note to travellers planning to visit Tanzania, that, from 1st June 2019 all plastic carrier bags, regardless of their thickness will be prohibited from being imported, exported, manufactured, sold, stored, supplied and used in Mainland Tanzania.

However, plastic or plastic packaging for medical services, industrial products, construction industry, agricultural sector, foodstuff, sanitary and waste management are not prohibited.

Visitors to Tanzania are advised to avoid carrying plastic carrier bags, or packing plastic carrier bags, or items in plastic carrier bags in their suitcase or hand luggage before embarking on a visit to Tanzania. A special desk will be designated at all entry points for the surrender of plastic carrier bags that visitors may be bringing into Tanzania.

Plastic carrier items known as ‘ziploc bags’ that are specifically used to carry toiletries will be permitted, as they are expected to remain in the permanent possession of visitors, and are not expected to be disposed of in the country.