Belgium to tax rewritable CDs

The Belgian federal government will quietly introduce a tax on rewritable CDs May 1, the office of the country's minister of economy confirmed. Officially called a "compensation for personal use," the tax will add 12 euro cents (13 cents) per hour to the price of a CD-R. The proceeds are earmarked for composers, copyright holders and performers.

The move comes after a political debate in Belgium over whether free music downloads should be legalized, with the introduction taxes on rewritable CDs and hard drives to counterbalance the likely lower tax income from music CD sales. However, the Belgian government says the current measure is designed to compensate for copies made for personal use.

For the full story in Flemish, visit ZDNet Benelux.