EC urges Romanian authorities to modify the first-time car registration tax after breaking deadline

Publish date: 15-02-2008
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Romania could face trial at the European Court of Justice regarding the controversial first-time car registration tax unless the Parliament adopts as soon as possible a draft law to comply with the EU legislation, the European Commission's spokesman declared.

Romania already exceeded by two weeks the last deadline to change the tax and avoid trial. The European Commission launched the infringement procedure in March last year after the tax entered into force on January 1.EC called Romania's first-time registration tax a breach of the country's European Union accession treaty. The body has asked the government to modify the tax and eliminate discrepancies in the way it is applied, as it exempts used cars originating from Romania and taxes those brought from abroad.

The infringement procedure will continue until the tax is modified, the spokesman said. The Romanian government drafted the new law assisted by the EC, according to people close to the deal. However, after the job was done, Romanian authorities announced they wished to revise it again.

Although the bill to modify the tax was made public, the government had not yet adopted it, saying it needs to consult political parties first.

The new bill stipulates the car tax to be set in accordance with the age of the car, as lower taxes will be paid for old vehicles and a limit of 20 years will be established regarding the age of cars for which the tax is levied. The new taxation system also considers the pollution level so that the tax will triple for the new Euro 4 cars while for the 14-15-year-old Euro 1 cars it will be ten times smaller.


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