Latvian coalition agrees in principle to increase excise tax on alcoholic beverages

Ruling coalition parties in Latvia have agreed in principle that excise tax rate for alcoholic beverages will be increased from July 2015, reports LETA.

Prime Minister Laimdota Straujuma (Unity) told reporters after the Coalition Council’s meeting on Monday that the proposal had been harmonized with alcoholic beverage producers and distributors, as well as with the Finance Ministry and Economy Ministry.

According to the initiative, excise tax on wine could increase by 9.3%, tax on fermented beverages with alcohol content over 6% and fermented sparkling beverages with alcohol content of up to 6% – also by 9.3%, and tax on beverages, which are not sparkling fermented beverages, with alcohol content up to 6% could decrease 45.3%.

Excise tax on beer would rise 22.6%, and excise tax on other alcoholic beverages – 1.7%.

The excise tax on alcoholic beverages could be further increased on April 1, 2016 and April 1, 2017. For instance, excise tax on beer could be raised another 10.5% in 2016 and 4.8% in 2017, so it would reach EUR 4.4 per 100 liters. Excise tax on wine is to be raised 5.7% in 2016 and 5.4% in 2017.

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