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  • OECD makes case for green taxes, but only some EU countries listen

    A new paper from the OECD on efficient taxation says raising the importance of property taxation and environmental levies is vital for improving government finances. 

    The paper ‘What are the best policy instruments for fiscal consolidation?’ adds to the growing bank of recommendations from economists that indirect taxation in general and environmental charging in particular are smarter ways to raise revenue and fight unemployment than taxing labour. Yet the latest figures from the monthly Oil Bulletin show that not all EU countries implementing austerity packages are following this approach. Greece and Italy have raised fuel taxes by more than €0.10 a litre in their drive to cut budget deficits, but Spain and Portugal have done nothing of the sort; Spain has kept its diesel tax at the EU minimum of 33 cents. Despite selective increases in fuel taxes, the average EU fuel tax currently stands at €0.52 a litre, eight cents lower than 1999 levels (adjusted for inflation).

    See report at