Not well-known but compulsory, environmental taxes apply to all companies doing business in France.
Companies that fail to pay the relevant ecological taxes in France face an administrative fine from the Ministry of Environment. The amount ranges from 0 to 7,500 per non-declared unit. The fine can double for repeat offenders.
What is the scope of the eco tax on EEE?
The Eco Tax (short for Ecological Taxation) covers the cost of household and industrial waste disposal for electric and electronic goods (EEE). This tax is due in all European Union member states, plus Norway and Switzerland.
Is my company liable for the eco tax on EEE?
If your company is involved in selling EEE into the French market, then yes. This is regardless of whether you are selling to individual consumers or other companies.
Your company is liable for the eco tax on EEE under the following cumulative conditions.
you are a producer or distributor of goods you produce or distribute electric or electronic goods encompassing those powered by electricity or electromagnetic fields (ie. all equipment using electrical outlets, batteries and accumulators) you are the first agent to bring such products to France. It's important to note that the eco tax on EEE applies even to distance sellers of these goods (internet retailers not established in France but selling to French customers).
How do I pay the eco tax on EEE?
The first step is to join a local government-approved eco organisation in charge of EEE collection, cleansing, recycling and collection of the eco tax contributions. The frequency and amount of eco taxation varies across Europe. In France, companies must submit a return annually or twice a year, based on of the number of goods declared.
Calculation of the eco contribution is based on a fixed amount for each type of product and paid by unit sold (for example: 0.02/USB keys sold, 0.45/lamps sold between 3.5kg and 10kg).
Three pre-payments are due to the French eco organisation. The eco organisation issues an invoice based on an estimation of the figures from the previous year. The last payment is the balance between the estimation and the real sales performed during the year.
You must display eco tax contributions on your invoices.