Industry slams EU VAT ruling

Industry leaders have hit out at an EU ruling which prohibits reduced VAT rates on domestic energy saving products.

The European Court of Justice upheld a legal attempt by the European Commission to outlaw lower rates being applied to measures including insulation and renewable technologies, which currently qualify for five percent VAT in the UK, compared to the standard rate of 20 percent.

The SEA has branded the decision ‘hypocritical’ whilst NIBE is urging the industry to unite against the decision, which would increase the cost to consumers seeking to cut their carbon footprints.

“This is an action by the EU Commission of the most astonishing hypocrisy,” said Dave Sowden from the Sustainable Energy Association.

“In one breath, EU institutions implore member states to take efficiency and sustainable energy more seriously – yet in the next, they use legal means to try to abolish the very policies the UK has in place to achieve this.”

Phil Hurley, managing director at NIBE, added: “We find the EU’s decision very concerning. As the nation strives to clean up its energy supply and achieve the carbon reduction targets set out by both the EU and the UK government, now is certainly not the time to abolish a policy that is in place to encourage people to make their homes more efficient.

“We implore other industry stakeholders to join us in making our collective voice heard to UK policymakers.”