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Chamber repeats delay call as National Treasury publishes carbon tax draft

Photo by Duane Daws
Roger Baxter

4th November 2015

By: Martin Creamer
Creamer Media Editor

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JOHANNESBURG (miningweeky.com) –The imposition of a carbon tax should be delayed by five years, the Chamber of Mines of South Africa reiterated on Wednesday following the publication by National Treasury of a draft carbon tax Bill.

The chamber said ahead of its own planned scrutiny of the draft that such a delay would be particularly appropriate given the absence of a proper regulatory impact assessment on the economic costs and benefits of imposing such a tax.

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Chamber of Mines CEO Roger Baxter pointed out that South Africa was already operating below the peak-plateau-decline trajectory to which President Jacob Zuma committed the country in Copenhagen in 2009.

Since South Africa had already achieved these targets, the chamber’s view was that the proposed carbon tax would have no effect.
 
Also, in view of South Africa currently accounting for only 0.9% of total global carbon emissions, its adoption of a carbon tax in the absence of a global deal on climate change and carbon taxes would have no material impact on global carbon discharge.

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Further, the imposition of a carbon tax in South Africa would make it the only developing country in the world to do so, ahead even of a number of competing developed countries such as Australia.
 
“With electricity prices already having trebled in real terms in the past seven years, additional cost increases imposed by carbon tax could further undermine the embattled mining sector,” Baxter warned in a media release to Creamer Media’s Mining Weekly Online.

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