Janek Kalvi, manager of Estonia's biggest strong alcohol producer Liviko, and head of Estonian Alcohol Producers Association, said that alcohol industries may have to close their plants for months if the new coalition implements the promised 15% alcohol excise tax increase next year, LETA/Postimees Online reports.
"For companies to be strong exporters, they have to be strong at the domestic market too and they should be offered here a stable economic environment. If alcohol excise tax is increased by 15 percent, and strong alcohol producers especially will be forced to close their plants as the result of it for practically a half a year, what exports are we talking about then," said Kalvi.
"With an excise tax increase that abrupt, any kind of threshold of reasonability is crossed. Alcohol excise tax is already today so high. With such an increase, what will happen is that retail trade will buy bigger reserves in advance and producer companies will have to reorganize their work for at least three to four months. Most likely we will be forced to send our employees to forced vacations after that."
One of the sources of financing for promises made by new government coalition is an increase of excise taxes for alcohol and tobacco products: by 15% starting next year instead of the initially planned 5% for alcohol excise tax and 16% instead of the planned 6% for tobacco excise tax.