Italian austerity hits wind power firms

ITALY: Italian renewable-energy companies with an annual turnover of more than €10 million will have to pay 10.5% additional company tax over the next three years, under measures approved by the government.

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Wind-sector operators were previously exempt from the tax, which was set at 6.5% and only applied to companies with an annual turnover of over €25 million. Enel Green Power has estimated the new tax will cost it €25 million a year to 2013.

Simone Togni, chairman of the Italian wind industry association, Anev, said the tax would jeopardise €10 billion worth of investment over the next five years and hit a sector that is crucial for Italy’s development and competitiveness.

Italy’s energy watchdog said the measures would probably have a negative impact on consumers through reduced investments and higher bills.

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