The European Commission has proposed an EU-wide tax on plastics, in order to help aid the £20 billion shortfall in its funding post-Brexit.
EU Budget Commissioner Günther Oettinger explained that the tax would be part of “new financial resources” available to the union, with Member States also being asked to contribute more.
Arguing in favour of the plastics tax, he said: “We have to ensure that we reduce the quantity of plastic used in Europe.”
“This is why, as part of the package which we are going to be proposing in the next weeks, we will bring forward the possibility of introducing a tax on plastics to incentivise the reduced used of plastic packaging. This will be done via the introduction of a European tax on plastic.”
According to The Independent, while the revenue may turn out small, the tax on plastics is significant as the European Commission has little control over its own revenue-raising powers, due to relying on Member States.
The Commissioner added: “We have two main problems – we have a gap on the revenue side, and a gap on the expenditure side. The revenue gap is because of Brexit: following a transition phase, we will have a situation where the UK, a large country and net contributor, are leaving the EU.”
The amount of tax and how it will be charged will be discussed within the coming weeks, says The Independent.