Have Your Say On Any Future Vape Tax Across The European Union
If you don’t want the EU to start taxing all things vape then YOU need to act now and have your say!
And yes this includes vapers from the UK because the way things are going Brexit – our leaving the European Union – looks to be further away than we might think!
The European Commission has just launched the catchily titled Public consultation on excise duties applied to manufactured tobacco and the possible taxation of novel products – which in effect is asking smokers and vapers to say what they feel about taxation on those products.
Novel products is in effect anything to do with vaping and Heat Not Burn is included in that section – indeed after answering the questionnaire its fair to say HNB is looked at very closely with regards to taxation…
I just wish the EU would be the first government to remove vaping from any tobacco legislation and let it stand alone – but that as they say is a whole other story!
Public Consultation On Any Future Vape Tax
OK so what’s this all about?
Back in June 2011 the EU set out Council Directive 2011/64/EU which in effect is the framework that sets the tax and excise duty on tobacco and novel products as the EU explains:
The Directive sets out EU rules on the structure and rates of excise duty applied to manufactured tobacco.
In particular, it defines and classifies various tobacco products according to their characteristics and lays down the relevant minimum rates and structure of excise duty.
The purpose of the Directive is to ensure the proper functioning of the internal market and a high level of health protection.
As part of the democratic brief of the EU [don’t get me started lol] any changes to this Directive must first go out to public consultation – that includes business – stakeholders and us the public.
The EU will also be contacting those more important than us mere ‘Europeans’ such as national tax authorities, experts and other key stakeholders – but this is our/your chance to have your say on what if any taxation you think is fair for vaping or novel products.
Have Your Say!
It’s an easy enough questionnaire that takes around 15 to 20 minutes to complete and you can skip some questions and at the end you can upload a more detailed statement should you desire.
The questionnaire is split into 4 parts:
- the first section asks for some background information about you, the respondent. This is in order to better understand your perspective;
- the second section covers the taxation of conventional tobacco products;
- the third section covers ‘novel’ tobacco products, in particular ‘electronic cigarettes’ and ‘heated tobacco products’;
- the final section gives the respondents the possibility to upload a position paper to better explain their choices and position
The EU says:
The online questionnaire is accessible in all official EU languages (except Irish) and replies may be submitted in any EU language.
Some questions require expert knowledge and you are welcome to answer only some of the questions included. At the end of the questionnaire, you will have the possibility to upload a document/position paper.
Once you have submitted your answers, you can download a copy of your completed responses.
OK they say it can take up to 30 minutes but trust me it took me less than 10 so please do take the time to answer – this is democracy people – sort of 😉
Given all the barriers and pitfalls vaping faces in Europe the last thing we need is a bloody ‘vape tax’ and 10 minutes of your time could help prevent that!
As you can see I’ve done mine so get clicking people!
So that should be your first step to influence the EU’s decision on any future vape tax whilst the second should be the Act now to stop the EU vape tax petition.
Whilst it’s rare petitions really do make a difference to Governmental decisions I still believe as vapers we should get behind this one if only to show that as a group we will stand up to be counted.
The petition states:
Vaping has enabled more than 7.5 million Europeans to stop smoking and helped a further 9 million to reduce their cigarette consumption (2). Sin taxes (excise duties) are not justifiable on consumer products which are not tobacco products and which are far less harmful to health than combustible tobacco.
Any harmonization project should instead look to prohibiting the levy of excise duty on vaping products in the European Union. Vaping products do not contain tobacco and are not combustible.
Vaping does not therefore produce smoke, carbon monoxide or tar, and vaping is at least 95% less harmful to health than smoking combustible cigarettes (3).
Vaping products are not tobacco products and the users of vaping products should not have to suffer a punitive and unjustified tax.
Look just 10 minutes of your time could prevent a dreaded vape tax – so maybe take a break from posting all those hand checks on social media and maybe do something to actually help the vaping community – you know it makes sense 😉