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The 'Common Market'

Remember when it used to be called that, and we were led to believe it was little more than a free trade agreement?

I would be quite happy with that, but that is no longer on the menu. It does not even stand for inter European free trade any more:

"The European Commission today presented a Report and a proposal for a Directive to amend the current EU excise duty legislation on tobacco. The draft Directive foresees a gradual increase in the EU minimum taxation levels on cigarettes and fine cut tobacco up to 2014....László Kovács, Commissioner for Taxation and Customs Union said: “Today's proposal supports the EU policy to reduce tobacco consumption and narrow the differences in price levels of tobacco products within the EU. It will help reduce illicit trade and cross-border shopping, which undermine the revenue and the health objectives of Member States which impose high taxes to deter smoking. It will give more flexibility to Member States on setting minimum tax levels and will modernise the current rules so as to ensure a level playing field for producers and retailers".

Ever been had?

(Declaration of interest - I am a non-smoker who has lapsed but intends to stop dead tomorrow).

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Blogger Blue Eyes said... 11:57 am

In return, the same legislation should introduce a maximum level of duty on booze to level the other playing field :-)  



Blogger hatfield girl said... 8:12 am

Subsidies from the EU for growing tobacco have been ended because of the health and safety stuff, as well as the product being an acquired taste to say the least and piling up in the usual EU formations; but now there are subsidies to irrigate land and improve buildings for crop treatment etc., where we grow - tobacco!

Changing the crop to, say, market gardening requires too much labour input so to get the land upgrade grants, tobacco it is till food prices lift enough to cultivate something else on the beautifully irrigated land.  



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