Australia’s only soda ash manufacturer, Penrice Soda, ceased production at the end of June, and has an outstanding carbon tax bill of $1.9 million.
Penrice is one of four companies that failed to pay their carbon tax bill on time last month, reports The Australian, out of 370 companies that were liable. The Illawarra Mercury reports that 75 per cent of the penalty for yearly emissions had to be paid by these companies by June 17.
Penrice is currently working with the Clean Energy Regulator regarding the bill.
The carbon tax has been cited as one of the difficulties faced by the loss-making company, which made the decision to be an importer of soda ash – through its Pro Asia Pacific joint venture – rather than manufacturer, which took effect last month.
Penrice has also suffered a downturn in demand for soda ash, due to winemakers sourcing their glass bottles overseas, the high dollar, and weakness in the building market. Soda ash is used in the making of glass.
“You can argue that the carbon tax pushed us into the red I would argue that the carbon tax contributed materially to the loss in the first half," said CEO Guy Roberts earlier this year.