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October 23, 2021

Gov’t approves environment stamp level to be charged by March

The tax will differ in relation to CO2 emissions. Specialists state that this measure will encourage imports of second-hand cars and will endanger the businesses of manufacturers of new cars.

The government has approved through emergency ordinance during yesterday’s meeting the introduction of the environment stamp that will be collected when cars are registered, being set to replace the current auto tax on March 15, Environment Minister Rovana Plumb stated yesterday during a press conference. The Environment Minister pointed out that until the new taxation system is introduced the government will finalize its implementation norms. The tax will differ in relation to CO2 emissions. “The novelty is that, first of all, the environment stamp is a necessary instrument for the renewal of the auto park in Romania and the reduction of green house gases. The cylindrical capacity is no longer dominant in the calculus formula. For EURO 5, EURO 4 and EURO 3 auto vehicles the calculus formula is the one that takes into account CO2 emission in proportion of one hundred per cent. For non-EURO, EURO 1 and EURO 2 auto vehicles the current calculus formula will be applied,” Environment Minister Rovana Plumb stated. The environment stamp comes up with a different calculus formula that leads to an average hike of approximately 10 per cent in the sum to be paid for EURO 4 and EURO 3 cars and to a drop of 60-90 per cent in the sum to be paid for EURO 2, EURO 1 and non-EURO cars. According to the new calculus formula, the sum to be paid will drop by 60 per cent for EURO 2, by 80 per cent for EURO 1 and by 90 per cent for non-EURO. The tax on non-EURO, EURO 1 and EURO 2 cars with older technologies will nevertheless be smaller than the current level, the idea being that these cars have a short life span and hence will pollute for a smaller period of time.

A document drafted by the Environment Ministry and sent to the press shows that the tax will remain at the same levels for EURO 5 cars, while for EURO 6, hybrid and electric cars no tax will be paid. Premier Victor Ponta stated last week that bonuses will be offered for the first time to persons that buy electric or completely non-polluting cars. The tax will nevertheless be calculated differently for gasoline-engine cars and diesel-engine cars, according to the Environment Minister’s latest statements. The environment stamp will be mainly calculated in relation to the CO2 emissions written in the car’s identity book or homologation documents, the emissions being taken fully into account in the case of the environment tax, not in proportion of 30 per cent as in the case of the current law. The environment tax will be paid only once, when the car is first registered on the Romanian market or on the first transcription but not in the case of civil transactions (inheritance or partition). Those that have paid the current auto tax will no longer pay the environment stamp. The government explains the changes through the fact that the current formula had disproportionately high values for certain pollution areas, which disregarded the Romanians’ purchasing power, and contained in its calculus, apart from CO2 emissions, the car’s cylindrical capacity (although that criterion was already taxed in the form of the car tax paid at the local administration), was discriminatory and sparked infringement threats from the EU. Through the introduction of the environment stamp the Environment Fund is estimated to grow by RON 100 M compared to 2012, provided Romanians will buy the same kind of cars. Specialists state that the environment stamp will encourage the imports of second-hand cars and will endanger the businesses of the manufacturers of new cars. After the environment stamp comes into force the registration of old and very old (non-EURO) cars will be cheaper, while the registration of new auto vehicles will become slightly more expensive.The government also approved yesterday, through a memorandum, the start of actions regarding the regionalization-decentralization process.

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