EU requests Hungary end the full excise duty exemption of “pálinka"
The European Commission has on Thursday requested Hungary to amend its legislation that grants an exemption from excise duty to fruit distillates (pálinka) under certain conditions.
Hungary exempts "pálinka" from excise duty when it is produced by households or distilleries for personal use, up to a maximum of 50 litres a year.
Excise duties for alcohol are harmonised under EU legislation (Directive 92/83/EEC). Under that Directive, Hungary is allowed to grant a 50% reduction to the normal excise rate to "pálinka" produced by distilleries, for personal use, up to 50 litres a year.
"Hungary's full exemption goes beyond what is allowed under EU legislation," the EU executive said in a statement.
The request takes the form of a reasoned opinion (the second stage of an infringement procedure).
If the legislation is not brought into compliance within two months, the Commission may refer the matter to the European Court of Justice.
MEP Göncz: There is trouble in Hungary
Former foreign minister Kinga Göncz who has been representing Hungary as member of the European Parliament since 2009 said in an interview, which was published in the Hungarian newspaper Népszabadság, that numerous conservative Members of the European Parliament (MEP) also have critical opinions on the activity of Viktor Orbán’s government.
MEP Kinga Göncz underlined that those concerns were very much articulated by British and Scandinavian MEP’s. She also added that even the President of the European Commission José Manuel Barroso, a conservative politician himself only gave the green light to the start of the negotiations of Hungary with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) after a long wait. MEP Göncz also said that there is no rhyme or reason that Hungary was the victim of a vast left-wing conspiracy. There is trouble in Hungary, she finally said.
Horizon 2020 – S&D urges real investments in innovation to spur real growth
Socialists and Democrats (S&D) in the European Parliament today pledged to deliver a comprehensive, adequately funded framework program for research and innovation, dubbed 'Horizon 2020'. During the debate of the draft report on Horizon 2020 in the industry, research and energy committee (ITRE), author of the report and S&D member of European Parliament (MEP) Teresa Riera said: “We must confront the crisis that is threatening Europe by investing in innovation for sustainable growth. We request that the financial resources of the last framework program are doubled for Horizon 2020, to deliver on our promises of a multidisciplinary approach, training tomorrow's talent and focusing on excellence.” Speaking on the European Council’s recent decision to reduce research funds in the upcoming financial period, MEP Edit Herczog, also member of the Hungarian socialist delegation, said: “The Council’s refusal to grant the required payments on certain lines of the 2012 budget is unacceptable.” The EP committee will now commence in-depth analysis of the report, which may be adopted in committee during the last trimester of 2012.
Last Updated on Thursday, 21 June 2012 11:57