International Seminar on Environmental Taxation
Beijing 26-27 October 2010
Living standards have risen rapidly in China and other emerging economies over the past decades. Hundreds of millions of people have been lifted out of poverty. For progress in living standards and quality of life to continue within the constraints set by natural resources and the environment, economic growth has to take a greener direction. Sound tax policies are key to achieving this transformation, setting the incentives for businesses to gradually adopt and develop new clean technologies.
At the seminar, Chinese experts described the energy taxes and environmental charges that are currently applied in China. Experts from OECD countries, the European Union and South Africa shared their experience concerning energy and energy-related taxes, including taxes on sulphur oxides and nitrous oxides that cause smog, as well as taxes on water and waste.
Among the challenges for both OECD and emerging economies are to refine the administration of environmental taxes, bring tax rates closer to levels that match the environmental damage and ensure they apply consistently to all sources of pollution.
These issues are part of an ongoing dialogue between OECD and the BRICs on how taxes and tradable permits can be used to achieve environmental goals and we look forward to a continued partnership with China.