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Reducing the VAT on energy from 21 to 6 percent is very expensive, but “offers little or no solace” for small businesses. Unizo said this on Thursday in response to the temporary VAT reduction that Minister of Finance Vincent Van Peteghem (CD&V) suggested to get the increased energy bill under control. The entrepreneurs’ organization also asks for energy measures for independent companies and SMEs.

jvhSource: BELGIAN

Thursday, January 13, 2022 at 2:13 PM

At the time, the Di Rupo government had already lowered the VAT on energy to 6 percent in 2013, but the Michel government later reversed that. With Van Peteghem’s proposal, the measure is once again more explicit in the Westraat.

But Unizo is not impressed by the measure, which according to the organization would cost at least 1 billion euros. The business association recalls that the measure did not apply to business customers of energy companies at the time. In addition, most small businesses can deduct the VAT. “A VAT reduction makes no difference to them,” says managing director Danny Van Assche in a press release. With the proposal, they would remain the victims, it sounds. “After all, this is how they continue to pay the sky-high peak prices. Add to that the sharply increased raw material prices, personnel costs and the corona crisis, and they are heading for an unbearable cost structure.”

Instead, Unizo asks the various authorities to take structural measures, for example to intervene in the various levies, surcharges and public service obligations that are also part of the energy bill. “For example, they can be adjusted downwards, temporarily or otherwise.” In this way, energy costs are tempered not only for families, but also for the self-employed and small businesses, Unizo concludes.

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