Taxes on wine may have dropped, but the cost is still high for the wine industry

Tuesday October 29 2013 by Kelsie Adams

The General Syndicat of Vignerons of Champagne (Syndicat Général des Vignerons de Champagne, SGV), as always paying attention to items that could affect their managerial tasks, have gone over the most recent Social Security Financing draft bill (Projet de Loi de Financement de la Sécurité Sociale, PLFSS) with a fine tooth comb. The information that they have gleaned from it is that even though the wine making industry is freed by the absence of high tax on wines, it must expect a rise in « base social contributions made by growers who work at the heart of the industy, » followed by « social deductions on revenue that exceeds 10% of capital stock owned by the grower, their spouse, their civil partner or their non-emancipated children » according to article 9 of the 2014 PLFSS.

The SGV are contesting this article which, in order to « improve small scale farming retirement on the one hand, [is ruining] the socio-economic activity of farmers on the other hand ». Applied to the entire French farming industry this rise will generate 168 million euros, allowing for a reform of medium scaled farming pensions to be submitted (to find out more click here). The government also state that this arrangement « should limit the optimisation of  developping corporate forms of farming activity, which has increased from 10.1% of professional transactions in 1988 to 45% in 2010 ».

With six opposing amendments calling for article 9 to be removed from the draft bill, the debate was really heating up at the first meeting in the National Assembly on 23rd October. Supporting the PFLSS speaker, the Junior Minister for Budget, Bernard Cazeneuve, defended « a [reestablished] equality for social costs in all aspects of farming , whether they are regarded directly favourably or under a corporate umbrella». Having already been agreed, article 9 will be reviewed at the Senat and it is possible that it will come into force on 1st January 2014.

 

 

 

[Photo of Bernard Cazeneuve : screengrab from parlimentary questions before the formal vote of the PLF 2014, National Assembly]

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