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France approves soda taxBy
Published : Dec. 29, 2011 - 09:33
France's top constitutional body on Wednesday approved a new tax on sugary drinks that aims to fight obesity while giving a boost to state coffers.
The Constitutional Council approved the new soda tax, announced in August as part of the government's fight against obesity and within the framework of a broader austerity programme, after it was passed in parliament last week.
The tax, which works out to one euro cent per can of drink, is expected to bring in 120 million euros ($156 million) in state revenues.
The tax has been slammed by beverage firms including Coca-Cola, which in September said it was suspending a planned 17-million-euro investment at a plant in the south of France in "a symbolic protest against a tax that punishes our company and stigmatises our products."
The Constitutional Court on Wednesday also approved an increase in the reduced Value Added Tax (VAT) on some goods and services from 5.5 percent to 7.0 percent.
Introduced in 2009 as part of economic stimulus measures, the reduced rate saw VAT lowered from 19.6 percent for some businesses, including restaurants and hotels.
The French government has sought to reassure investors and maintain its triple-A credit rating with a series of austerity measures, including the announcement last month of 65 billion euros in savings by 2016, on top of the 12-billion-euro deficit-cutting package announced in August.
The government has said it needs to make 100 billion euros in savings to balance the budget by 2016. (AFP)
佛헌법재판소 '비만세' 승인
프랑스 최고사법기관인 헌법재판소가 청량음료에 부과되는 이른바 '비만세'를 28일 승인했다.
프랑스 정부는 비만 방지를 명목으로 설탕이 든 청량음료에 추가로 세금을 부과 하기로 지난 8월 결정했다.
이 세금은 청량음료 1개당 1센트(0.01유로)가 부과되며 음료제조업체들로부터 큰 반발을 불러일으켰다.
세계적 음료업체인 코카콜라는 이 세금이 청량음료 기업에 재정적 부담을 주고, 청량음료 제품을 죄악시한다며 이에 대한 항의로 프랑스에 투자하기로 했던 계획을 철회한다고 선언했다가 다시 이를 번복했었다.
프랑스 정부는 청량음료에 대한 비만세 부과로 새로운 세수 1억2천만유로가 생 길 것으로 기대하고 있다.
프랑스 정부는 청량음료에 새 세금을 부과하는 한편 경기부양을 위해 현재 19.6 %인 부과세를 5.5-7%로 축소하는 업종을 당초 호텔, 식당업 등에서 더 확대해 발표 했다.
프랑스는 지속적인 투자유치와 국가신용등급 하락을 막기 위해 재정적자를 줄이 려 안간힘을 쓰고 있으며 2016년까지 재정 지출을 650억유로 줄여 재정적자를 120억 유로 축소하겠다는 계획이다.
프랑스는 2016년까지 재정균형을 달성하기 위해서는 재정지출을 1천억유로 줄여야 한다.
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