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Taxes on diesel, carbon split rivals in Canada election

by Staff Writers
Ottawa (AFP) Sept 9, 2008
Prime Minister Stephen Harper promised Tuesday to reduce Canada's excise tax on diesel fuel in contrast to his main rival's plan for a carbon tax, in a heated election campaign.

Harper said if his Conservatives are returned to power he would cut the diesel tax by half, from four cents (Canadian, US) to two cents a liter.

Liberal leader Stephane Dion meanwhile has outlined a plan widely supported by environmentalists that would introduce a tax on carbon emissions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the country, and thus curb global warming.

"At a time when consumers are concerned about rising energy prices, we want to reduce the tax on diesel a bit," said Harper. "Others plan to increase the tax on diesel significantly."

Voters must choose, he said, between "a modest affordable reduction in the tax of diesel or a massive carbon tax that will increase the cost of everything."

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Russia's Venezuela gambit a test for US: analysts
Brussels (AFP) Sept 9, 2008
Russia's decision to send warships to the Caribbean is not just a riposte to US navy manoeuvres in the Black Sea, but a sign of Moscow's determination to contest American influence, say analysts.

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