• Service: Tax, International Executive Services, Global Compliance Management Services
  • Type: Regulatory update
  • Date: 4/29/2013

EU - Status of harmonization of car registration, circulation taxes 

April 29: The EU today reported there currently is little harmonization of tax provisions applied by the EU Member States with respect to passenger car taxation.

Today’s release provides an update on car registration and circulation tax situations.


A release in December 2012 addressed guidelines that EU Member States need to apply with respect to car registration and circulation taxes. At that time, recommendations to improve the single market—in particular to avoid double taxation of cars when citizens move from one EU Member State to another and to remove obstacles for cross-border car rentals—were made.

See TaxNewsFlash-Europe: EU - Clarifying EU rules on car taxation

Current situation

Today’s release reports that there currently is little community legislation, or harmonization of national tax / fiscal provisions in the area of passenger car taxation.

While each EU Member State must establish their national provisions for the taxation of cars, these rules must nevertheless be in line with the general principles of the EU law. This means in particular that the rules are not to give rise to border-crossing formalities in trade between EU Member States, and that they must respect the non-discrimination principle.

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