EU Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism Roundtable Discussion

On the 15th of July PIT collaborated with the European Union Australian Climate Business Network to discuss the much-anticipated EU’s carbon border adjustment mechanism and what the implications are for Australia.

From the EU’s perspective, a carbon border adjustment mechanism (CBAM) is to ensure that its efforts to combat climate change are effective, and do not result in carbon leakage, as energy-intensive industries relocate outside the EU’s regulatory jurisdiction and European production is outcompeted by cheaper, carbon-intensive imports. This would see a charge levied at the border, proportionate to the carbon emitted during the production of imported goods.

Expected to initially apply to heavy industry sectors including steel, iron, cement, fertilisers, aluminium and electricity, it will require importers to provide data for imported goods and buy digital certificates, the price of which will be linked to the EU carbon market.

Countries that have a similar domestic carbon price to the EU could be granted equivalence, meaning that exports originating in their territory would not be subject to the EU’s CBAM, so as to avoid double carbon taxation. 

A massive thank you to all the panellists who joined us…

During the discussion we heard from an incredible panel of senior leaders from impacted industry sectors and policy makers. The panel, along with moderator Bill Cole (Partner at BDO Australia) and Jason Collins (Chief Executive Officer of the European Australian Business Council) spoke about the implications of the mechanism for Australia Trade with Europe and the practical implementation of the CBAM. A massive thank you to our keynote speaker and co-organisers:

  • Vicente Hurtado Roa, Head of the Energy Taxation and other Indirect Taxes Unit, DG TaxUD, European Commission
  • Marian Schoen, National Director, European Australian Climate Business Network
  • Jason Collins, Chief Executive Officer, European Australian Business Council
  • Bill Cole, Partner, International Trade, BDO

We would also like to take a moment to thank and acknowledge the industry participants in the discussion present who actively commented on Vicente’s presentation and expressed their valuable opinions and concerns on the CBAM implications:

  • Andrew Cumpston, Director – Victorian Office, Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
  • John Kettle, Partner, McCullough Robertson
  • Pr. Susan Freeman, Professor, University of South Australia
  • Bryan Clark, Director, Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry
  • Peter Grey, Director, Business Events Sydney
  • Dugald Murray, Chief Advocacy, Strategy and Transformation Officer, Victorian Chamber of Commerce and Industry

Key themes throughout the discussion:

  • Affected Industries
  • Core elements of the CBAM
  • CBAM Authority and Compatibility
  • Implementation and Cost
  • Risk of Wider Trade Dispute, Negotiation Impacts, Exemptions
  • Managing Domestic Interest, Coordination with EU Trading Systems
  • Corrupt Influence
  • Potential Expansion

Our analysis of the EU CBAM

Our International Policy recently produced an analytical paper of the EU CBAM which you can access via our International Policy page by clicking the link below.

Final thanks…

A final thank you to our keynote speaker Mr. Vicente Hurtado Roa for this very insightful presentation, and to all of our panellists for their valuable questions & contribution to our discussion on this critical matter for the EU and Australia. We would also like to thank our co-organisers: the EU-Australia Climate Business Network, the EABC, BDO and our dedicated PIT team members who did a fantastic job of orchestrating this successful online event.

This event was presented in collaboration with the European Union Australian Climate Business Network, which is supported by the European Union and Climate KIC Australia.

We couldn’t have put on such a successful event without the financial support of the European Union’s Partnership Instrument. The opinions expressed are of the speakers and do not necessarily reflect the views of the European Union.


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