US firms reject tax breaks for green products

EU committee of American chamber of commerce urges cautious, flexible, approach on IPP

American firms operating in Europe have rejected a key element of European Commission proposals for an integrated product policy (IPP). In a new position paper, the EU committee of the American chamber of commerce says a plan to introduce lower sales tax rates on ecolabelled products is "backward looking and innovation-stifling".

"It encourages manufacturers to focus on present solutions rather than searching for quantum leap improvements" in their products, the committee says. The plan should be avoided as a "very arbitrary way of interfering with market forces," it says, and replaced by "more flexibility in the assessment of the environmental quality of products."

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