From January 1, 2023, a new tax on non-reusable plastic will come into force. Its objective is to promote the prevention of the generation of non-reusable plastic packaging waste, as well as the recycling of plastic waste.
It is an indirect tax included in Law 7/2022, of April 8, which affects the use in Spanish territory of non-reusable containers containing plastic, whether empty or containing a product.
The objective of the tax is to promote the prevention of the generation of non-reusable plastic packaging waste, as well as the recycling of plastic waste.
Thus, all these boxes, containers, packaging tapes and films, as well as any type of shrink-wrapping material containing non-reusable plastic, will be affected by this tax.
The tax will also apply to semi-finished plastic products intended to obtain the containers, as well as those containing plastic intended to allow the closure, marketing or presentation of non-reusable containers.
The tax will also apply to landfill and incineration. Likewise, this law prohibits the sale and distribution of, among other things, glasses, plastic cutlery or cotton swabs.
The objective of this new law is to reduce the waste generated ten years ago. On this occasion, the percentage established is 15% compared to that generated in 2010, while the weight of waste produced should decrease by 13% in 2025.
Articles affected by the plastic tax
The tax will affect practically the entire industry: pharmacy bottles, shampoo, gel, etc. ; detergent containers, bottles, storage packaging for transporting beverage cans, bubble wrap to protect objects, etc.
Different consumer sectors will be affected by this new law. Among them, some such as food, beverages, perfumery and cosmetics, parapharmaceuticals, hotels, textiles, hardware, DIY and technological consumer goods.
Which plastics will be affected
Initially, it was to affect single-use plastic containers linked to the European Union, but the whole tax base has been widened and will affect any type of non-reusable plastic container, regardless of the object that uses it.
This tax will apply to the manufacture, import or intra-Community acquisition of containers containing plastic in their composition and which cannot be reused.
Some potholes in the plastic tax law
This tax, included in the law on waste and polluted soil for a circular economy, in force since April 2022, was raised by the Ministry of Ecological Transition (Miteco), with a proposal to “very generic tax without taking into account the problems it entails and without taking into account the way businesses operate“.
There are virtually no solid data and records in the industry on the percentages of plastic in packaging, let alone the amounts related to recycled plastic in products.
Faced with this situation, the Tax Agency is working on the model of tax control and tax management, but there is no development regulation, nor any sign of having one, at least within a period of time. reasonable according to the Tax Agency itself, although in any case it would have to be reformed, previously the new waste law.
There will be cases where the company finds it much more expensive to manage the tax than the tax itself, with a rate of 0.45 euros for each kilogram of plastic not recycled.