'Special tax' to skim especially high oil profits

9th September 2005, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, Sept 8 (AFP) - French Economy and Finance Minister Thierry Breton on Thursday said oil companies could be subject to a "special tax" in light of surging gasoline (petrol) prices.

PARIS, Sept 8 (AFP) - French Economy and Finance Minister Thierry Breton on Thursday said oil companies could be subject to a "special tax" in light of surging gasoline (petrol) prices.

"We do not rule out the possibility of submitting to a vote by (parliamentary) deputies a special tax corresponding to a special situation," he told France 2 television.

Oil companies could also decide to lower prices at the pump, thereby "giving back to consumers some of the exceptional profits" they have made, he said.

France has seen unleaded petrol rise 13.4 percent in the past twelve months to EUR 1.33 a litre.

But in the wake of Hurricane Katrina in the United States, which exacerbated a global refining crunch, prices at the pump soared to an astonishing EUR 1.50 a litre for the first time in several European countries on Tuesday.

Copyright AFP

Subject: French news

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