Majority of House votes to abolish plastictax

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15 November 2023

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Majority Lower House votes to abolish plastictax

A House majority supports the SP's proposal to abolish the "plastictax" as soon as possible. Despite the surcharge consumers have to pay, they still throw away packaging. This 'plastictax' applies to the sale of packaging containing plastic for 'on the go' such as a plastic-coated paper coffee cup.


The new legislation


On July 1, State Secretary Heijnen introduced new legislation to reduce the use of single-use plastic. For 'on the go', as an entrepreneur you may still sell single-use plastic cups and packaging, but you must charge a surcharge for this. As a business owner, you may determine the amount of the surcharge, and the proceeds will also benefit you as a business owner. In addition, as an entrepreneur you are required to offer a reusable variant, or allow "Bring Your Own."

New rules ask a lot of entrepreneurs


The new legislation is complex and places a heavy burden on entrepreneurs. For you as a hospitality entrepreneur, reusable packaging is quite an investment that is not always possible. Many times this is because many entrepreneurs have to deal with high energy and purchasing costs, paying off tax debts and staff shortages. In addition, issues such as reusable packaging storage, washing facilities, food hygiene and required return logistics also play a role.

Motion Lower House passed


Yesterday, the Lower House voted on the SP's motion asking the government to abolish the plastictax as soon as possible. According to the House, the measure only increases the price of products for consumers and does not contribute to sustainability. Even the VVD, which agreed to the measure in the cabinet, now wants to get rid of it. VVD MP Erkens speaks of "bullying consumers and entrepreneurs."

According to NOS, the Environmental and Transport Inspectorate (ILT), the body charged with enforcing this law, also finds the rules unclear. The inspection tested the rules for enforceability, enforceability and fraud resistance even before they came into effect last year. The conclusion was that the rules are so unclear and complicated that they are difficult or even impossible to comply with.

How to proceed:

Although the Cabinet may override a motion, there is nevertheless a clear signal coming from the House of Representatives that the Cabinet must seriously review the new Single Use Plastic legislation. It is now the Cabinet's move.