- Advertisement -

Recent news reveals that the Scottish government has been forced to delay the start of its deposit return scheme from August to March 2024, despite a stern rebuttal from Lorna Slater, the Scottish circular economy minister, who dismissed UK government claims that a formal exemption request was not submitted. Slater believes the UK government failed to offer an exemption to the Internal Market Act (IMA), which came into effect post-Brexit to supervise trade within the UK, thus causing the delay. However, the UK government has since stated that they only received a formal request for IMA exclusion on March 6, 2023.


- Advertisement -

Delaying the Deposit Return Scheme

The Scottish deposit return scheme (DRS) is a much-awaited initiative that is intended to implement a 20p deposit on canned and bottled drinks, which will be refunded to consumers upon their return to the retailer. Despite initial criticisms from business groups, the scheme received a lot of support from the general public. Unfortunately, the delay in the program’s commencement is mainly attributed to the UK government’s failure to provide an exemption to the IMA. According to the Scottish government, former deputy first minister John Swinney made the initial request. However, the UK government denies this claim.

Modifications and Exemptions to the Scheme

The Scottish government has recently modified the deposit return scheme by granting exemptions for small containers and products with low sales. The changes have eliminated all miniature bottles of alcohol by granting a 100ml exemption. Additionally, the scheme now offers exemptions for producers who sell fewer than 5,000 units per year. If the producers have smaller product lines with sales below the stated threshold, there is no requirement for a deposit on their products. Slater has claimed that the latest changes have exempted 44% of small producers from the deposit return scheme.

Political Game-Playing Allegations

Ms Slater has dismissed the UK government’s claims and accused Scottish Secretary Alister Jack of political game-playing. She claimed that the Scottish government had been working towards an exclusion from the IMA since 2021. Conversely, the UK government spokesperson said that it had been difficult to fully assess the impacts of the exclusion request on cross-UK trade, business, and consumers.

In summary, the Scottish government’s deposit return scheme has encountered numerous setbacks due to the UK government’s alleged failure to provide an exemption to the IMA. The Scottish circular economy minister, Lorna Slater, vehemently denies the UK government’s claims that a formal exemption request was not submitted. The scheme, however, has been modified to include exemptions for small containers and products with low sales, with the most notable exemption being for containers under 100ml. It is still unclear when the deposit return scheme will commence, but it remains a significant initiative that is eagerly anticipated by the Scottish public.

- Advertisement -
Previous articleDeputy Prime Minister Dominic Raab resigns following inquiry into allegations of bullying
Next articleDominic Raab Bows Out of Cabinet Amid Bullying Probe Findings
Hi I'm Oliver Smith, I would say that I take great pride in my work as a journalist and strive to produce high-quality, impactful stories that make a difference. With more than eight years of experience under my belt, I am passionate about uncovering the truth and shining a light on issues that matter.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here