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China details rules for environment tax law enforcement

BEIJING -- China's State Council has detailed rules for the enforcement of an upcoming environment protection tax law, which takes effect on Jan. 1, 2018.

The regulation specifies taxation targets, the tax-setting basis, conditions for tax reduction and exemptions as well as tax collection management, according to a State Council decree signed by Premier Li Keqiang.

The rules also make clear the taxation scope of solid waste and centralized sewage treatment areas.

China has a regulation on collecting the "pollutant discharge fee." However, some local governments exploit loopholes and exempt enterprises which are otherwise big contributors to fiscal revenue. For years, regulators have suggested replacing the fee system with a law.

After the new regulation becomes effective, the regulation on "pollutant discharge fee" will be abolished.

The new regulation also offers a cooperation mechanism between tax and environmental protection authorities for sharing information.

The discharge data filed by companies will be deemed "abnormal" if the figure is much lower than its figure the previous year or the amount of its peers without appropriate explanation, the regulation said.

In this case the new law requires a review on abnormal data by environment protection authorities.

Under the new law, which targets enterprises and public institutions that discharge listed pollutants directly into the environment, companies will pay taxes for producing noise, air and water pollutants as well as solid waste.

Tackling pollution has been listed as one of "the three tough battles" that China aims to win in the next three years, according to the Central Economic Work Conference earlier this month.

From January to November, China investigated over 35,600 violations of environmental protection laws and regulations, up more than 102 percent year on year.

Source:Xinhua

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