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The Low Carbon Economy Ltd

14 Jan 2010 09:01:08

Low carbon import tax not workable, says EU commissioner



Low carbon import tax not workable, says EU commissioner
A low carbon import tax on countries that are not investing in energy-efficient production is unfeasible, according to the EU trade commissioner-designate.

Karel de Gucht told European parliament this week that a low-carbon tax on imports to counter the cost of EU environmental legislation would result in a "trade war".

Industries have called for the tax for fear that they will not be able to compete with cheaper foreign goods from countries such as India and China after raising their prices to factor in energy-efficient manufacturing costs.

Earlier in the week, the environmental audit committee in the UK parliament also recommended tariffs on goods from countries that are not adhering to climate change targets compatible with that of Europe.

The commissioner-designate warned companies that they would to remain competitive in the marketplace despite stringent environmental legislation.

However, Mr Gucht did call for a Europe-wide coalition to remove border tariffs on the import and export of low carbon goods such as solar panelling and wind turbines.

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