Frankfurt – The German rubber industry association WDK, as part of the Alliance for the Fair Energy Turnaround, has called for a “burden moratorium” for small- and medium-sized businesses amid pressures from a second Covid lockdown.
In a statement 9 Nov, the alliance warned that numerous industrial sectors were seriously threatened by the consequences of the pandemic with many companies not knowing “how to get through winter.”
An additional burden, the alliance warned, is the planned implementation of a national emissions trading scheme which requires companies active in the heating and transport sectors to pay for their CO2 emissions.
The scheme is proposed to start with a fixed carbon price of €10/tonne that rises to €35/tonne by 2025. Thereafter, prices will be allowed to float up to a ceiling of €60/tonne, according to commodity market new website Montel.
The move is part of Germany’s ambitious plan to become greenhouse gas neutral by 2050. The country has set the preliminary target of cutting emissions by at least 55% by 2030 compared to 1990 levels.
“To implement legislative initiatives… which will result in additional costs for companies in the coming year, will result in significant competitive disadvantages and distortions on the labour market,” said Christoph René Holler, general manager of the Federal Association of Ceramic Industry, part of the alliance.
Therefor, Holler called on the German government to make a “clear commitment” to medium-sized industry in the country by renouncing “any new burdens immediately.”
"Especially in times of crisis, companies need to be certain that there will be no existence-threatening cost burdens in Germany as an industrial location in 2021," he concluded.