Germany goes easy on green tax hike for firms

The German government coalition has watered down plans to slash tax breaks enjoyed by energy-intensive installations subject to an eco-tax on fuels and energy. Cuts to existing tax breaks agreed on Sunday are less stringent than initially planned.

The coalition favours a tobacco tax hike rather than increasingly taxing energy-intensive industries. The basic amount of the eco-tax will be doubled to €1,000 instead of €2,500 as foreseen previously under Germany's austerity package. The reduced tax rate will be raised from 60% to 75% instead of 90%.

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