Green tax considered to help cut emissions
By Wu Jiao (China Daily)
Updated: 2008-09-13 10:55

The authorities have started researching an environmental tax for polluters to cut their emissions, a top environment official said on Friday.

Several government agencies have organized an inter-ministerial team and brought together experts to come up with a research paper on environmental taxes, Pan Yue, deputy minister of environment protection, said.

He did not give details of the scope of the tax or when the policy would come into effect.

The team is also studying the feasibility of levying environment-related fees, policies of ecological compensation and setting up a trade model for emissions, Pan said.

Pan made the remarks at a forum on new environment policies for ensuring sustainable development in China, which has been plagued with environmental woes after three decades of high economic growth.

To tackle the green challenges, the ministry has also been working with banks, insurers and commerce authorities on policies to accelerate the growth of clean industries and firms, while banning or discouraging those that consume more energy or discharge more pollutants.

In one instance, the taxation authorities had taken up advice from the ministry to cut tax rebates for exports of more than 50 categories of high energy-consumption products in June last year. The move lowered the exports of the products by 40 percent last year.

Still, Pan said the major challenge in environmental protection is in combining efforts of the administrative, economic and legislative departments toward the cause.

(For more biz stories, please visit Industries)