CARDIFF: Retailers must charge shoppers in Wales a 5p per plastic carrier bag tax from October next year. The original plan was for a 7p tax next spring.

The new charges were announced as the regulations needed to allow Wales' carrier bag charge to become law were laid at the assembly.

Environment Minister Jane Davidson said: "We have delayed the introduction to accommodate the needs of businesses and are confident that the October start will allow for a smoother and more successful introduction and will allow retailers more time to prepare."

The regulations will be considered by the assembly on 30 November.

The CBI said the 5p charge set the right balance between reducing use and not penalising low-income households.

Wales director David Rosser said: 'The extra seven months will give retailers additional time to train staff and ensure IT equipment can process the charge.

"The delay will also give consumer more time to prepare for the charge."

But he said there was concern about restaurants and take-away food outlets as many of these businesses were unaware of they would be affected.