EU: Public consultation, excise tax and alcoholic beverages

EU: Public consultation, excise tax, alcoholic beverage

The European Commission has launched a public consultation to assess whether certain rules relating to the excise taxation of beer, wine, and other alcoholic beverages need to be changed so as to address tax fraud and reduce the sale of counterfeit alcohol.

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The consultation will also consider whether small and home producers of alcohol could benefit from simpler rules and lower excise taxation.

The EC consultation announcement (28 August 2015) invites consumer groups, alcohol producers, retailers, and other interested parties to give their views on a broad range of issues, such as the possible benefits of establishing exemptions and common reduced rates, particularly for small producers of alcoholic beverages and home-brewers. It also aims to find out whether EU consumers are properly informed about what they are drinking—for instance, whether discount alcohol is more likely to be counterfeit, and as importantly whether it contains harmful chemicals.

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