'Don't tax recycled paper'


'Don't tax recycled paper'

SYDNEY — The Australian Conservation Foundation, Friends of the Earth, and Greenpeace last week called on the federal government to retain the sales tax exemption on 100% recycled paper.

Their call was supported by Ecopaper, the company that pioneered 100% recycled paper in the Australian market in 1986.

The April Industry Commission report on recycling recommended that the sales tax exemption, which came into force in 1989, be removed.

The exemption has helped to push local production of 100% recycled paper from less than 100 tonnes in 1988 to 15,000 tonnes in 1989-90. Recycled paper is now only 5-20% dearer than virgin paper products.

"Rather than contemplating removal of the sales tax, the government should be considering expanding the use of fiscal measures to increase the market share of other environment friendly papers, such as non-chlorine bleached papers", said Greenpeace pulp and paper campaigner Kyrn Stevens. n