Italy Delays Plastic Packaging Tax July 2026

Understanding the Impact and Objectives

 

Since 2021, the EU has enacted laws aimed at standardizing the regulation of single-use plastic products within the internal market. In practice, however, these regulations have not been implemented uniformly across member states. Following in the footsteps of France, the UK, and Spain, Italy is now introducing its own regulations on single-use plastics, though Italy delays its plastic packaging tax to July 2026.

 

What is the Plastic Packaging Tax or PPT? 

The Italian government is implementing a new tax on plastic packaging. Under Italy’s Budget Law for fiscal year (FY) 2022, the plastic tax will enter into force on 1 July 2026. However, originally introduced by the Budget Law for FY 2020, the tax has been postponed several times. 

 

What is the Government PPT Policy objective? 

A model similar to those implemented in Spain and the UK is planned. The goal is to reduce the production and consumption of single-use plastic products (MACSI) and to support the sustainability of the circular economy. The tax will provide a clear economic incentive for businesses to use recycled material in plastic packaging production instead of new plastics. This will increase demand for recycled materials, stimulate higher levels of recycling and collection of plastic waste, and divert waste away from landfills or incineration. Ultimately, this initiative aims to reduce the impact of global plastic pollution.  

 

When will the tax be applicable from? 

Originally scheduled for implementation in 2020, the plastic tax in Italy was then set to come into force at the beginning of 2023. However, Italy delays its plastic packaging tax to July 2026, pushing the start date further out. 

 

What is the PPT rate? 

Amount of the Tax: The tax is set at €0.45 per kilogram of virgin plastic. It does not apply to plastic material obtained from recycling processes. 

Penalties for Non-Compliance: Failure to pay the plastic tax will result in severe penalties, ranging from two to five times the unpaid tax, with a minimum penalty of €250. Late payments will also be sanctioned, with an administrative fee of 25% of the tax owed, and a minimum fee of €150. 

 

Taxable Products 

Taxable products are those that consist partially or completely of organic polymers of synthetic origin and are used to enclose, protect, or supply goods or foodstuffs without being intended for reuse. Examples include bottles, bags, and food containers. Exemptions include products for permanent use, medical devices, and items used to store and protect medical preparations. Compostable plastic compliant with DIN EN 13432 and plastic material from recycling processes are also excluded from the tax. 

 

Taxable Persons 

The tax liability varies depending on the manufacture and the country of importation: 

Manufactured in Italy: If the goods are manufactured in Italy or if the manufacturer is resident in Italy, the manufacturer is liable for the tax.

Imported from EU Member States: If companies acquire products for economic activity, they are liable for the tax. If private end users purchase the product, the seller is liable.

Imported from Non-EU Countries: The importer is always liable for the tax.

 

What should our Italian based customers do next? 

If you want to discuss or hear more about how this impacts your business, contact your local FPS Account Manager or Customer Service Representative for any additional support. 

 

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