CHINA VOWS TO CREATE ENVIRONMENT TAX
Earlier this month the Chinese State Council vowed to introduce an environment tax by 2020. The tax would tackle “chronic and intractable pollution” by raising the operational costs of polluting industries, encouraging them to install cleaner technologies. Although China has had a pollutant discharge fee since 1979, the system has been exploited by local governments, among others. For example, local governments will sometimes exempt polluters from the fee to attract investments; other times local governments are not eager to enforce pollution reduction because they depend on the pollutant fees for government revenue. One significant difference between the fee system and the new environment tax is that the new tax will be collected by the taxation authorities, not by specialized environmental protection authorities. For the full story, see http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/business/2016-12/09/content_27621457.htm.