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Eurofound's EU PolicyWatch collates information on the responses of government and social partners to the COVID-19 crisis, the war in Ukraine, rising inflation, as well as gathering examples of company practices aimed at mitigating the social and economic impacts.

Factsheet for measure PT-2023-1/3093 – measures in Portugal

Phasing out of harmful exemptions on oil and energy products

Eliminação gradual das isenções prejudiciais em matéria de produtos petrolíferos e energéticos

Country Portugal , applies nationwide
Time period Temporary, 01 January 2023 – 31 December 2025
Context Green Transition
Type Legislations or other statutory regulations
Category Reorientation of business activities
– Change of production/Innovation
Author Heloísa Perista, Maria da Paz Campos Lima, Paula Carrilho, Ana Brázia (CESIS) and Eurofound
Measure added 20 February 2023 (updated 04 May 2023)

Background information

The current geopolitical context requires policies that respond to economic disruption and the effects of rising energy costs. The response to this increase in costs is also connected to the Government's strategy to promote industry based on a process of digital and climate transition, the reduction of carbon emissions and the manufacture of more sustainable products with greater technological incorporation.

Thus the State Budget for 2023 (Law 24-D/2022 of 30 December) establishes the phasing out of harmful exemptions on oil and energy products.

Content of measure

Inputs used in the production of electricity and heat (cogeneration), or town gas in the mainland, are now taxed 100% of the rate of Tax on Petroleum Products (ISP) and 100% of the addition on CO2 emissions. In the Autonomous Regions of the Azores and Madeira these products are taxed 50% of the ISP rate and 50% of the rate of addition on CO2 emissions, which will increase to 75% in 2024 and 100% in 2025.

A subset of products used by entities that produce electricity, electricity and heat (cogeneration), or town gas as their main activity outside of the autonomous regions, are taxed 40% of the ISP rate and 40% of the rate of addition on CO2 emissions. In 2024 the percentages will increase to 50%.

Another set of products, petroleum and energy products used in installations subject to an agreement on the rationalisation of energy consumption (ARCE), will be taxed 30% of the rate of addition on CO2 emissions in 2023. In 2024 the percentages will increase to 65% and in 2025 to 100%.

The rate of addition on CO2 emissions does not apply to the products covered by the European Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS).

These exemptions will not apply to biofuels, biomethane, green hydrogen and other renewable gases.

Use of measure

No information on the use of measure is available.

Target groups

Workers Businesses Citizens
Does not apply to workers Applies to all businesses Does not apply to citizens

Actors and funding

Actors Funding
National government
No special funding required

Social partners

Social partners' role in designing the measure and form of involvement:

Trade unions Employers' organisations
Role Consulted Consulted
Form Consultation through tripartite or bipartite social dialogue bodies Consultation through tripartite or bipartite social dialogue bodies

Social partners' role in the implementation, monitoring and assessment phase:

  • Social partners jointly
  • Main level of involvement: Peak or cross-sectoral level


The employer and trade union confederations were involved in the discussion and the drafting of the Opinion of the Economic and Social Council on the Draft State Budget for 2023.

Views and reactions

According to the Opinion of the Economic and Social Council (Conselho Económico e Social – CES) on the Draft State Budget for 2023, the government has adopted a cautious stance. The CES points out, however, that excessive budgetary prudence will have obvious repercussions in terms of the availability of internal support for the different economic agents to deal with the most serious consequences of the crisis and also in terms of greater investment in stimulating the transformations that the country needs.

The CES notes that the State Budget proposal incorporates the commitments made in the recent Medium-Term Agreement for the Improvement of Income, Wages and Competitiveness, signed by the four employer confederations and the UGT, with effects in areas such as taxation, and which have a direct or indirect impact on the income enhancement objectives, of mitigating price increases or the reduction of context costs and the creation of a more favourable environment for competitiveness, which may contribute to greater efficiency in government action and in mitigating the impact of the deterioration of the economic situation on families and companies.

The measures foreseen in the framework of the energy and climate transition are part of the government's commitment to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050. It is important to rethink the entire strategy in this area, in line with the European guidelines.

In general terms, the proposed State Budget for 2023 is, according to the CES, timid in its support measures for the ongoing and expected economic and social effects of the war in Ukraine; it is cautious with regard to European developments in response to the crisis, starting with monetary policy; but it has room for manoeuvre to deal with the domestic repercussions of any worsening of the international situation. The CES considers that the government should adopt a flexible and dynamic stance in budgetary execution, responding promptly to the most unforeseen situations, particularly in terms of increased support for families and businesses. Explanations of Vote:

In the opinion of the Confederation of Trade and Services Portugal, the opinion of the CES should take a clearer and more incisive stance, for which reason, even though it agreed with a large part of the content of the opinion, this Confederation voted to abstain in the final overall vote.

According to the CGTP-IN, the Opinion of the CES comprises a value judgement of the Medium Term Agreement for the Improvement of Income, Wages and Competitiveness, the contents of which will, in the opinion of the CGTP-IN, be profoundly negative. The CES Opinion, also in the area of taxation, does not criticise the measures envisaged in the State Budget in relation to corporate income tax, namely those measures which aim to deepen the Tax Benefits regime. The CGTP-IN voted against the Opinion of the CES on the State Budget for 2023.


  • 07 November 2022: Opinion of the CES on the Draft State Budget for 2023 (
  • 30 December 2022: State Budget for 2023 (


Eurofound (2023), Phasing out of harmful exemptions on oil and energy products, measure PT-2023-1/3093 (measures in Portugal), EU PolicyWatch, Dublin,


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Disclaimer: This information has not been subject to the full Eurofound evaluation, editorial and publication process.