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How the EU works - an object lesson

I do not suppose that this 'little' announcement will get much media play, but it deserves it:

"The Council today adopted a directive (1) updating EU rules on the structure and rates of excise duties on cigarettes and other tobacco products. The directive is intended to ensure a higher level of public health protection by raising minimum excise duties on cigarettes, whilst bringing the minimum rates for fine-cut tobacco gradually into line with those for cigarettes.

(1) The decision was taken without discussion.

Isn't that nice?  How about that for proof positive of the democratic deficit in Brussels?

And there's more:

"Transitional period for cigarettes: the new rules allow for transitional arrangements until 1 January 2018 for member states that have not yet achieved, or only recently achieved, the current minimum rates, namely Bulgaria, Greece, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Hungary, Poland and Romania";

Quantitative restrictions for cigarettes: the directive allows member states not benefiting from the transition to impose a quantitative limit of at least 300 cigarettes on the number of cigarettes that may be brought into their territory from member states applying transitional arrangements. It also allows member states applying those arrangements, once their rates have reached 77 EUR per 1000 cigarettes, to apply quantitative limits with regard to member states whose rates have not yet reached an equal monetary level;

As ever, so much for free trade and allowing differential pricing to actually benefit the consumer.

And the EU has spotted that people smoke roll ups as they are cheaper:

Fine-cut tobacco: the Council decided to increase the minimum excise duty requirements for fine-cut tobacco as follows: member states will comply with either a proportional minimum or a monetary minimum, amounting to 40% of the weighted average sales price and 40 EUR per kg on 1 January 2011, 43% and 47 EUR/kg on 1 January 2013, 46% and 54 EUR/kg on 1 January 2015, 48% and 60 EUR/kg on 1 January 2018 and 50% and 60 EUR/kg on 1 January 2020.

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Blogger CityUnslicker said... 1:28 pm

They love us really, it is our betterment that they hold in their very hearts.  

Blogger Croydonian said... 1:54 pm

What could be more tragic than unrequited love?  

Blogger Weekend Yachtsman said... 2:33 pm

Presumably minimum excise rates for alcohol are only a matter of time.

Thus passes the last and only possible benefit of EU membership.

Can we leave now?  

Blogger James Higham said... 3:03 pm

This is so, we are rabbiting on about it but still a deathly silence from the people, including fellow bloggers. AA provides the tools - why not utilize them to contact the people we need to put pressure on to have a referendum on the EU?

Or will we just keep moaning and doing nothing?  

Blogger Croydonian said... 11:19 am

WY - all too likely, I fear.

JH - Typically trenchant James, and I suspect, sadly, you are right.  

Blogger Steven_L said... 6:22 am

They are going the right way about it if they want to create a big black market and lots of crime.

Silly me, I forgot, the anti-smoking lobby do want tobacco to join the list of 'controlled' substances.  

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