Weird taxes: There's a tax on potato chips, a weird baby name, and a burping cow tax

Taxes are inevitable for the economic growth of states. Mostly income, property, turnover or dividends are taxed, and in some countries inheritance, capital and insurance premiums are taxed.

But is it necessary to tax junk food, the baby's name or the number of flushes in the toilet? These are some of the strange taxes that exist around the world - writes.

The US state of Maine, which is famous for blueberries, had a blueberry tax. Namely, the tax in this part of the United States was $1,50 for half a kilogram of wild blueberries. In this way, excessive harvesting of this fruit, which would be harmful to the economy, was prevented. This tax burden was shared between blueberry growers and processors. Maine authorities recently waived this tax burden for one year. They cited rising interest rates, labor costs and inflation as reasons for this, which they noted were eating into profit margins. In addition, climate change, price volatility (volatility) and growing competition are concerns.

The robot tax is a South Korean decision that has been in effect since 2017. It has reduced the incentives to invest in robotics to slow the loss of jobs caused precisely by the robotization of the economy. The loss of jobs is also harmful to the state budget because the robotization of the economy reduces the number of those who are taxed – unlike workers, robots do not pay taxes.

New Zealand briefly taxed burping cows. The goal was to reduce emissions of planet-warming gases such as methane. Namely, the agricultural industry emits large amounts of greenhouse gases.

Hungary taxes food that is harmful to health, and this tax is known as the potato chip tax. This is an attempt to encourage the population to eat healthier food and reduce teenage obesity. The tax on chips was introduced in 2011 and amounts to four percent, and it applies to snacks, sweets, soft drinks and fruit jams. Mexico also has a junk food tax. It was introduced in 2013 and is eight percent.

Sweden taxes unusual baby names, especially those that are difficult to pronounce. Namely, even 717 euros of tax have to be paid for such names. Certain names such as "Allah", "Ikea", "Veranda", "Metallica" and "Superman" are completely banned, while names such as "Lego" and "Google" are acceptable. Names must be approved by the tax agency before the child turns five.

There are also restrictions in some other countries when it comes to baby names. Thus, in Japan and France names that are considered shameful and humiliating are not legally allowed. Furthermore, the use of any titles as names is prohibited in New Zealand.

The toilet flushing tax is a tax imposed by the US state of Maryland. It refers to how many times a toilet is flushed, and the revenue generated by this tax is used to restore the Chesapeake Bay, which is affected by algal blooms. The tax was introduced in 2004 and was initially $30, doubling in 2012. Alison Prost from the Chesapeake Bay Foundation stated in 2017 that the condition of this bay is getting better and better, writes Euronews.

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