Estonian finance minister: Car tax should focus more on emissions

Cars in Estonia.
Cars in Estonia. Source: Siim Lõvi /ERR

On Wednesday, following a working meeting with Estonian Minister of Climate Kristen Michal (Reform), Estonian Minister of Finance Mart Võrklaev (Reform) said that once the details are finalized, the much-discussed car tax will be more environmentally friendly than had initially been proposed.

Võrklaev told ETV show "Aktuaalne kaamera" that officials have now managed to work through the feedback received regarding the drafting proposal and therefore held a discussion on the next steps.

"Based on the feedback, we are probably moving more strongly towards emission reductions as a  way to increase the environmental impact of the design of this tax. In other words, by taking the CO2 emissions into greater account. There are, of course, a lot of nuances that still need to be taken into account," said Võrklaev.

Võrklaev added that more work needs to be done on the draft in order to pass it along with the new state budget.

The minister also said that the draft would require higher taxes to be paid for cars, which produce more pollution, in order to motivate a general move toward using more environmentally-friendly vehicles. "However, we still need to work these things out. In the coming weeks we will be able to see the draft and the calculation models."

ERR asked Võrklaev how worried owners of 15 to 20-year-old cars, for example, should be.

"There is no reason for excessive concern. But it is always worth considering whether you could look for a more economical vehicle. However, in today's discussion we kept on saying that we are going to leave the age component in there in one form or another. That would be a way of taking into account that social side. Not everyone will be able to buy a new and environmentally-friendly car immediately," said Võrklaev.

"A certain form of tax reduction, depending on the age of the car, which will, in all likelihood, address people's ability to pay pretty well. I believe it will stay in there in one form or another. What the final formula will be, we are still working on that," he added.

Speaking about whether the weight of vehicles would be factored into the tax model, the finance minister said the feedback received pointed toward smarter ways to implement the tax, with the aim of encouraging people towards using vehicles that produce lower emissions.


Follow ERR News on Facebook and Twitter and never miss an update!

Editor: Michael Cole

Source: Interview: Huko Aaspõllu

Hea lugeja, näeme et kasutate vanemat brauseri versiooni või vähelevinud brauserit.

Parema ja terviklikuma kasutajakogemuse tagamiseks soovitame alla laadida uusim versioon mõnest meie toetatud brauserist: