Industry ire over Belgian packaging tax plan

Proposed tax on one-way drinks containers "unlawful, uncompetitive," say manufacturers

A Belgian plan to tax one-way drinks containers while reducing taxes on refillables is environmentally unjustified, unlawful and would distort the EU's internal market, according to the European packaging industry. Trade association Europen and several beverage can manufacturers have written to the European Commission's enterprise department arguing their case.

The changes to Belgian beverage packaging taxation were to be introduced from the beginning of next year but are now scheduled to take effect on 1 March to avoid overlapping with transition to the euro. Further delay or even derailment remains a possibility since EU state aid approval has yet to be granted and Belgium's parliament has still to be sent a draft law for debate.

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