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Kai Schlegelmilch*Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety, Berlin/GermanyGreen Budget Reform in Germany – Results and Perspectives2nd-3rd September 2004, Budapest, HungaryInternational Conference “Environmentally harmful subsidies and ways to eliminate them“*Though views expressed here represent government positions in general, they are made on a personal capacity.
Steady increases in 1999-2003:
Single increase in 1999 and 2003 only:
Measures agreed Extent of implementation
Support for building new existing houses: only slightly
Annual car tax on CO2-emissions: no longer a priority
EU-kerosene tax for aviation: at least option available o
Abolish VAT-exemption for flights into EU-MS blocked, waiting for EU
Reducing German hard coal subsidies high level until 2012
More revenues for buildings and renewables slight progress o
Adjustment/Phasing out of some ETR reductions implemented since 2003
Reduction of VAT-rate on rail transport to be decided for 2005 o ?
4 x 3 x o 1 x
Summary: mixed picture and several measures left for taking action
· Very difficult to implement further ETR-steps on transport fuels given the high level of taxation and nine neigbhouring countries.
· More likely to increase taxes on heating fuels and/or electricity since tankering hardly takes place.
· Implementation of the EU energy taxation directive (particularly: introduction of coal tax for heating purposes, abolishing the gas tax for electricity generation;possibly: tax supplement on sulphur-rich light heating fuel,introduction of a national kerosene tax)
· Increased taxation of industry, e.g. linked to energy audits or emission trading schemes, particularly for energy-intensive industries. UK’s climate change levy on business only and DK’s long experiences, but also signals for moves of Hungary offer room for manoeuvre.
· Increased use of additional revenues for the promotion of environmental measures
· Better embodiment of EFR in a policy package to overcome non-fiscal/-price barriers