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UK Plastic Packaging Tax - where are we now?

UK Plastic Packaging Tax - where are we now?
by Annis Mapleston at 09:08 in Emerging, Packaging

​Following a few months of silence, the UK government has now published more information about the plastics tax. So what do we know about it?

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Following the publication of draft legislation ​on November 12th, we now know that some things have changed from the proposal contained in ​the March consultation (covered in a previous blog post).​ Key details that you need to be aware of are as follows.


From 1 April 2022, all businesses that manufacture or import plastic packaging will have to pay £200 per tonne of plastic packaging that does not contain at least 30% recycled material.


Note the difference between this and the taxes being implemented in the EU, which focus on recyclability of packaging, rather than use of recycled content. In a change from the original proposal, both pre- and post-consumer recycled material will be accepted in the calculation of recycled content levels.​


Any product that is designed to be used (either on its own or in combination with another product) to contain, protect, deliver or present goods is liable to be taxed: this includes transport and service packaging. A product is considered to be plastic if it is predominantly plastic by weight, even if it contains other materials as well. Exemptions will apply in very limited circumstances, such as for the immediate packaging of medicinal products.


Other rules will also be imposed, including the requirement for non-resident taxpayers to appoint a local tax representative, and for businesses that wish to be treated as a group for taxation purposes to make an appropriate application to the authorities.


Be warned: substantial fines and / or prison sentences can be imposed in cases of fraud, evasion and misstatements.


If you have any questions about the UK plastic packaging tax, or would like to know how it will affect your business, please contact us to talk to one of our consultants.

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