The outermost regions, against the tax on CO2

They allege that their citizens already bear extra transportation costs due to the distance of these territories from the continent.

EFE The Gran Canarian palms

The
outermost regions of France, Portugal and Spain warned the European Commission on Wednesday that its citizens are already carrying extra transport costs for their
distance from the mainland and "couldn't stand
a new European tax on carbon emissions» .

In a joint statement after the meeting held in Fort-de-France, the regional and local governments of Guadeloupe, French Guiana, Réunion, Martinique, Mayotte and Saint Martin (France), Azores and Madeira (Portugal) and the Canary Islands (Spain) point out that the new communication published by the Commission on the ORs responds only "partially" to "some" of their concerns.

In particular, the eight most remote regions of continental Europe express their "concern" about the
"Objective 55" legislative package (the emission reduction targets linked to climate change), due to "the consequences that it could have with respect to equitable treatment" for their populations.

The ORs had already obtained this Tuesday from the European Commission the commitment to extend from 2023 (its current limit) until 2030 the preferential treatment they have with respect to
green kerosene taxwhich allows them to be exempt from this rate on flights that connect their territory with their respective states.

However, through the president of the Government of the Canary Islands, Ángel Víctor Torres, who will assume the coordination of the group from November, they had already warned that it is not enough for them.

The outermost regions want a
longer and broader exemptionwhich applies to flights from any EU territory, not just those from your country, and also to transport by sea.

In their joint statement this Wednesday, these regions of France, Portugal and Spain recall that thanks to the biodiversity they conserve they are already "negative contributors with respect to the objectives of reducing carbon emissions."

Imposing a new rate on air or maritime transport fuels, they argue, represents a "threat" for their economies with "insurmountable repercussions on air and maritime connections, both internal and external, in these regions."

Likewise, they underline that they already suffer "the negative consequences derived from the alterations in the supply by sea", since "in addition to the shortage of raw materials, basic consumer goods, animal feed or fertilizers, mainly, delays in deliveries of goods, the excessive increase in the cost of freight, energy and supplies.

“The purchasing power of households is currently seriously affected and the different sectors of activity are facing significant temporary cost overruns, which come on top of the structural cost overruns linked” to their distance from continental Europe, adds the joint statement.

Therefore, they require specific treatment, in application of article 349 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, which provides that, when adopting measures that may affect them, the Council must "take into account the
special characteristics and requirements of the outermost regionswithout endangering the integrity and coherence of the legal order of the Union, including the internal market and common policies«.

The rest of the areas of the Commission Communication on their territories in which the ORs do not see their concerns fully answered are these: the demographic problems of their regions, the future of their fishing fleets, the specification of mechanisms for progress of the strategy and a possible reform of the POSEI (the instrument of the common agrarian policy that attends to its singular conditions of remoteness and insularity).

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