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EU ministers back low rate VAT for restaurant alcohol.

THE WAY has been cleared for all 27 European Union (EU) member states to charge low rate VAT on alcohol served in restaurants, with the EU Council of Ministers backing the idea yesterday (March 10). This right is still expected to be introduced from January 2011. A council official told just-drinks ministers agreed there should be "no discrimination" between the types of restaurant services that could pay low rate VAT, which could--depending on national policies--be as low as 5.5%. The decision follows strong lobbying by the French government for low rate restaurant VAT, a move that had thus far been opposed by Germany. Speaking after the meeting EU taxation Commissioner Laszlo Kovacs stressed the law rate was not compulsory: "I want to underline that reduced rates are not an obligation, it's an option," he said.
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Author:Nuthall, Keith
Publication:International News
Date:Mar 1, 2009
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