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Portugal proposes to tax plastic bags

Portugal proposes to tax plastic bags

The draft Law on Environmental Taxation, recently approved by the Council of Ministers of Portugal, includes a tax of eight cents of a euro for each plastic bag, a fiscal instrument that aims to place the maximum level of 50 bags per capita per year in the 2015 and 35 per capita per year in 2016.

The Minister of the Environment, Jorge Moreira da Silva, has declared that with this measure the Government intends to end the pernicious effect of plastic bags on the environment, especially in the sea. Through this tax on product, the Government expects to collect 40 million euros in 2015. The minister has argued that the reform of "green taxation" seeks to "reorient consumption patterns" and not increase taxes indiscriminately.

Commercial establishments such as, for example, supermarkets, are the subjects of the tax and those who would be obliged to pay the State. The value of this tax will be transferred to the final consumer via prices. In other words, the bags are sold and therefore would be subject to VAT. In practice, each bag will cost around ten euro cents.

Another important measure of this environmental tax reform is a carbon tax (environmental tax on CO2 emissions), as an additional tax on energy and oil products, the ISP. This would generate 95 million euros. For the consumer, this would mean an increase of little more than a euro cent in the price of gasoline and diesel, which is added to the two cents increase due to the increase in the road tax included in the State Budget for 2015 .

In addition, the Portuguese Government aspires to reintroduce, in a generalized way, the tax incentive for vehicles at the end of their useful life, for which there will be an allowance of up to 4,500 euros to acquire cars powered by "clean energies". In other words, this incentive would be given to those who replace an old car with an electric one or a plug-in hybrid. In the first case, there will be a reduction of 4,500 euros in Vehicle Tax on the new car. In the second, 3,250 euros.

Circular economy
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