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Price not finalised, but $40 carbon tax rejected

Carbon tax negotiations will not be finalised until July, but Federal Government rejects talk it will be $40 per tonne

May 18, 2011

Negotiations to impose a carbon tax on business will not be finalised until July, but the Federal Government has rejected talk it will be $40 per tonne.

Following Fairfax reports earlier this week speculating about the price of a carbon tax, Climate Change Minister Greg Combet told ABC Radio “a starting price will be well south of $40 a tonne”.

Combet says negotiations as part of the multi-party climate change committee that involves the Greens are ongoing.

“Well we’re going to be negotiating pretty intensively over the course of the next four and five weeks and our objective is to try and have the package finalised by early July,” he says.

The Federal Government’s climate change advisor, Professor Ross Garnaut, has recommended a starting price of between $20 and $30 per tonne, rising by 4 percent annually. He says fuel prices will increase by between five and seven cents a litre.

The carbon tax is due to be introduced on July 1 next year. Garnaut wants an emissions trading scheme by 2015.
Linfox has supported the introduction of a carbon tax, but wants assistance for trade-exposed industries and households.

The trucking industry has been given a seat at the negotiating table. Along with the Transport Workers Union, the Livestock and Bulk Carriers Association want operators compensated for any fuel price rises due to the tax.

During a speech at the National Press Club last month, Combet hinted the Government would provide assistance to affected businesses.

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