German energy tax hikes hailed as a success
Germany's co-governing Green party has celebrated the fifth birthday of the ambitious programme of energy introduced from 1999. The so-called ecotax has met expectations both environmentally and economically, the party said. Prompted by the series of tax hikes, petrol consumption fell by 10% since 1999, the party said. The revenues have enabled a 2% cut in workers' and employers' pension contributions, considerably more than the government was reporting just a year ago (EED 09/03/03). The party said it backed further rises in tax rates. See press release.