German industry urges government to reduce power tax

The logos of BDA, BDI and DIHK are pictured at their common headquarters in Berlin

BERLIN (Reuters) - Germany's BDI industry association urged the government on Thursday to reduce the electricity tax to the European minimum level to help companies in Europe's largest economy remain competitive.

"The BDI expects the government to swiftly agree a concept to ensure prices at internationally competitive costs in the long run," it said in a position paper.

The association also urged the government to agree a short-term instrument to protect companies through state subsidies amid worries about firms shifting production to countries with lower power prices.

Germany's economy ministry earlier this month announced a plan for energy-intensive companies to receive billions of euros in state subsidies to lower their electricity costs on certain conditions. The proposal however has met with resistance in the finance ministry.

(Reporting by Sarah Marsh; Editing by Sharon Singleton)