just On Call - Soft drinks trade "mobilised" to fight taxes - Coca-Cola Enterprises CEO
CCE opposed the French duty rise
The head of Coca-Cola Enterprises has said the soft drinks industry is “in a far better position today” to fight legislation such as sugar taxes than it was three years ago.
Speaking at a Deutsche Bank analysts conference in Paris this week, John Brock said that in 2011 the French Government “surprised the system” with an excise increase, but that since then the industry has “mobilised” itself. He said soft drinks makers now know how to work together “to make sure legislators know the facts".
“We are in a far better position today than we were three years ago to make sure the right kinds of decisions are made,” Brock said. “You never know what's going to happen but our position today is that no new taxes are going to happen.”
In October 2011, CCE's then-CFO, William Douglas, labelled the French soft drinks tax - EUR0.02 per 33cl can - "unjust and unfair”, with Brock saying the company would work to oppose it ahead of its introduction on 1 January 2012.
In the analysts conference, Brock also said he was “very excited” about The Coca-Cola Co's partnership with Keurig Green Mountain to launch home-carbonation system Keurig Cold despite speculation it would steal share from bottlers. “We've had conversations with Coca-Cola and they have assured us the bottling system will be involved in this program going forward,” he said.
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