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Carbon Tax

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A carbon tax was first proposed by French President Nicolas Sarkozy two years ago, calling it a "Climate-Energy Tax". While issuing the finalized version of the tax proposal on September 10, 2009, Sarkozy said that, to respond to climate change, shrink the country's reliance on oil and update the pattern of the country's economic growth, the government needed to introduce some adjustments for the establishment of a genuine ecological tax code.

He said successful experiments had already been done in some Northern European nations.

Sarkozy stressed the imposition of the tax wasn't to benefit the government's budget but to change the patterns of fuel consumption by both families and firms.

Due to the tax, families could enjoy cuts or exemptions in income tax and social welfare tax while enterprises would be compensated for investment.

Much of the electricity in France is generated from nuclear and hydropower plants, discharging far less carbon dioxide. Therefore, the electric power generation sectors of France are free of carbon tax.

(Xinhua News Agency December 4, 2009)

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