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Taxation and Customs Union

Consultation on Directive 92/83/EEC – Structures of excise duty on alcohol and alcoholic beverages


Consultation on the review of the existing "structures" legislation of excise duties on alcohol and alcoholic beverages

Policy fields


Target groups

The European Commission seeks the views of all interested parties on how the current rules (Council Directive 92/83/EEC) on the structures of excise duties on alcohol and alcoholic products work in the modern EU.

Period of consultation

From 28.08.2015 to 27.11.2015

Objective of the consultation

This consultation is part of the evaluation of the alcohol structures Directive (92/83/EEC), under the recently adopted Commission's Better Regulation Framework. It will assess factors including the added value of EU intervention in this domain and how effective the existing framework has been so far.

The Directive sets out the fundamental characteristics such as:
1. The methods for establishing and charging excise duty;
2. Drinks classification;
3. Reduced rates for SME's producing beer and spirits;
4. Exemptions, such as for alcohol denatured not for human consumption
5. A number of derogations
6. A number of miscellaneous other technical issues.

Regulation in this field has a direct impact on citizens and businesses: moderate drinking is part of the social fabric of life with strong economic focus in the EU in sectors such as HORECA (Hotels, Restaurants and Cafes). This is a vital sector of the EU economy with ongoing growth potential.

A number of the existing provisions could arguably be improved and, therefore, the question arises whether a broader modernization of the legislation could be attempted. To prepare the ground for a possible future legislative initiative in this area the European Commission hosted a Fiscalis working group, held in Latvia in May 2015, the European Commission is launching this public consultation to give all interested stakeholders an opportunity to express their views on the issue.

How to submit your contribution

This is the first time respondents are offered a wider variety of options while giving their feedback to the consultation. Besides answering the consultation questions, they can now send their own ideas on how to improve legislation, provide their personal experience on how alcohol taxation affects the public domain.

Two channels for public consultation are available:

  • A targeted consultation of stakeholders directly impacted by Directive 92/83/EC. The targeted consultation contains detailed questions customised for the following types of stakeholders:
    • Producers of beer
    • Producers of wine / winegrowers
    • Producers of fermented beverages other than wine or beer
    • Producers of intermediate products
    • Producers of spirits
    • Producers, importers, distributors or users of denatured alcohol
    • Organisations representing the interests of the abovementioned stakeholders

If you are an economic operator (or an organisation representing the interests of any of the above mentioned stakeholders and wish to answer the questions of the targeted consultation, please click here to submit your contribution. A .PDF version is also available here .

  • An open consultation which is designed to capture general views and opinions of any interested persons (citizens, economic operators, NGOs, academics, local, public authorities, etc.)

If you are a citizen or any other type of stakeholder wishing to contribute by answering the open consultation please click here to submit your contribution. A .PDF version is also available here .

Received contributions will be published on the Internet. It is important to read the specific privacy statement attached to this consultation for information on how your personal data and contribution will be dealt with.

View the questionnaire

Please note that English, French and German versions are now available.

Reference documents and other, related consultations

. Alcohol Study - Consultation Strategy final
. Evaluation Roadmap

Contact details

responsible service

Directorate-General for Taxation and Customs Union
Indirect Taxes other than VAT - Unit TAXUD/C2

e-mailTAXUD-UNIT-C2atec [dot] europa [dot] eu (TAXUD-UNIT-C2[at]ec[dot]europa[dot]eu)
postal address

European Commission
Directorate-General for Taxation and Customs Union
Indirect Taxes (other than VAT) - Unit TAXUD/C2
Rue du Spa 2, Office SPA3 05/072A
B-1049 Brussels

View the contributions

In the interests of transparency, organisations have been invited to provide the public with relevant information about themselves by registering in the Interest Representative Register and subscribing to its Code of Conduct. If the organisation is not registered, the submission is published separately from the registered organisations.

Results of consultation and next steps
Protection of personal dataSpecific privacy statement