Date: 27.08.2018

Source: Bulgarian Industrial Association

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The Executive President of BIA Radosvet Radev defined the dialogue between the Bulgarian Industrial Association and the Ministry of Environment and Water (MOEW) as qualitative and fruitful during his meeting with the Minister of Environment and Water Neno Dimov. Among the discussed topics were the opportunities for deepening the partnership between the ministry and employers’ organizations.

Minister Dimov assured that the ministry will continue to work towards reducing the administrative burden on business and finding the most sustainable legislative and regulatory solutions on specific issues. Mr. Radev expressed readiness of BIA's experts to participate in the discussion and preparation of environmental legislation affecting business.

A specific occasion for today's meeting was the idea of introducing product taxes on end-of-life textiles, for which BIA was approached by the Association of Retailers and Traders of Second Hand Clothes (ARTSHC) in the beginning of August 2018. According to the association’s data, imports of second-hand clothing in Bulgaria comes up on average to 30 tons per day and almost half of this quantity is being re-exported (mainly to non-EU countries) with only 2-5% of the goods being destructed. Because of this ARTSHC expects not to impose product taxes on textile products.

In response, Minister Neno Dimov specified that a working group for drafting the regulation on the product tax on textiles will be set up, where representatives of the business will be invited to participate.

The Executive President of BIA clarified that the business is not trying to escape its responsibilities for environmental protection, but taxes should not become an additional financial burden, which degrades the competitiveness of companies. According to Radosvet Radev, the achievement of environmental objectives can be much more effective through incentives, rather than sanctions.