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Guyana to heavily tax Styrofoam containers

August 30, 2013

GEORGETOWN, Guyana (AP) — Guyana is planning to impose heavy import duties on Styrofoam boxes and other non-biodegradable containers to help reduce garbage and fight other environmental problems in the South American country.

The office of President Donald Ramotar says customs officials will soon decide on a rate to deter importation of such materials. The government said in a statement late Thursday that importers who use alternatives to Styrofoam will receive generous incentives.

Officials blame Styrofoam boxes for clogging the country’s drainage systems and contributing to devastating floods such as those in 2005 and 2006 that killed more than 40 people.

Government officials last year had proposed a ban on such materials, but the measure was not approved.

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