Spain plans $528m in en­vi­ron­men­tal taxes MADRID:

Kuwait Times - - BUSINESS -

Spain wants to raise 500 mil­lion eu­ros ($528 mil­lion) from new en­vi­ron­men­tal taxes as part of a pack­age of fis­cal mea­sures to meet the Euro­pean Union’s bud­get deficit goals. The new en­vi­ron­men­tal taxes are part of the re­vised bud­getary plan Spain has sub­mit­ted to the Euro­pean Com­mis­sion. The plan says the new taxes will tar­get a re­duc­tion in green­house gases.

Spain’s plan also in­cludes pre­vi­ously an­nounced tax hikes on to­bacco, al­co­holic bev­er­ages and a new tax on soft drinks that to­gether it says will raise an­other 350 mil­lion eu­ros ($369 mil­lion). The plan also in­cludes mea­sures to crack down on tax fraud, stream­line govern­ment ad­min­is­tra­tions and elim­i­nate some tax breaks for busi­nesses. Spain says its re­vised bud­getary plan should gen­er­ate 7.5 bil­lion eu­ros ($7.9 bil­lion) as tries to re­duce its deficit from an ex­pected 4.6 per­cent of GDP this year to an EU-agreed 3.1 per­cent in 2017 to avoid sanc­tions.

Even with the in­creased rev­enue, Spain says to meet Brus­sels’ tar­get it is also count­ing on con­tin­ued “strong eco­nomic growth.” Spain’s deficit soared to 11.2 per­cent in 2009 dur­ing its eco­nomic cri­sis. Its econ­omy, which grew 3.3 per­cent through the first three quar­ters of 2016, is now one of the fastest grow­ing in the 28-na­tion Euro­pean Union. Spain’s tourism sec­tor was es­pe­cially strong this year, af­ter deadly attacks in Turkey and else­where.

The bud­get will have to pass a vote in the Span­ish par­lia­ment, where Spain’s con­ser­va­tive govern­ment, headed by Prime Min­is­ter Mar­i­ano Ra­joy, rules in a mi­nor­ity.

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