Following a 2019 public consultation in which 80% of respondents supported an increase in the single-use plastic carrier bag charge, the Scottish Parliament will be asked to increase the charge to 10p from the current level of 5p from 1 April 2021.

The Scottish Government stated that the increase is meant to further discourage the use of single-use plastic bags. Current charges have already lead to an  80% fall in the annual number of such bags issued and the increased charge should build on the behavioural change.

The Scottish Government also plans to bring forward an exemption to the carrier bag charges for retailers offering certain deliveries and collections as a result of the national lockdown brought about by COVID-19.

Useful guides on this topic

Tax increase on single-use plastic bags
HMRC have doubled the levy on single-use plastic bags to 10p following the results of the consultation 'Single-use carrier bags: extending and increasing the charge'. This will apply to all businesses in England that supply goods in single-use carrier bags. 

Carrier Bag Tax
A single-use plastic carrier bag tax was introduced in October 2015 bringing England into line with Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

Plastic Packaging Tax
What is Plastic Packaging Tax? Who does it apply to? Are small businesses subject to Plastic Packaging Tax?


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