ENERGY & OFFSHORE | Staff Reporter, Singapore

Government to slap firms with $5 carbon tax from 2019

Firms that produced 25,000 or more greenhouse gases per year will have to pay.

“The carbon tax will apply uniformly to all sectors, without exemption. This is the economically efficient way – to maintain a transparent, fair and consistent carbon price across the economy to incentivise emissions reduction,” said Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat at the 2018 budget announcement yesterday.

However, Heng clarified that petrol, diesel, and compressed natural gas (CNG) firms will not be imposed with carbon tax since they are already levied with almost similar excise duties. The first payment for carbon tax will come in 2020, based on emission in 2019. The tax is expected to generate nearly $1b in the first five years of implementation.

Furthermore, Heng noted that they will review the carbon tax by 2023 as the government intends to raise the rate between $10 and $15 per tonne of emissions by 2030. Singapore's big 4 accounting firms have generally approved of the new carbon tax.

Simon Yeo, partner, Climate Change & Sustainability Services, Ernst & Young said that carbon emissions now carry a price tag. " It is time to measure and mitigate emissions. These first steps into a carbon tax regime will pave the way for a more sustainable future to do our part to reduce global emissions and to protect Singapore in the future.”

Angela Tan, partner, Tax Services, Ernst & Young Solutions added: “Singapore comes of age as a developed country in doing its part in climate action and upping the ante in fighting carbon emission.”

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