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Published: Wednesday 28 August, 2013

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European Commission leader Jose Manuel Barroso praised Australias controversial plans to introduce a carbon price to combat climate change, saying it was an important step.

At a joint press conference with Prime Minister Julia Gillard in Canberra, performance wear Barroso welcomed the divisive levy, which has driven thousands to attend anticarbon tax rallies and call for new general elections.

Ahead of her election, Gillard said there would be no carbon tax under a government she led but she later backtracked, saying a fixed levy was needed before the scheme moved to a marketbased emissions trading model.

The policy aboutface has prompted calls for the Labor leaders resignation, and seen thousands take to public rallies t performance wear o denounce the tax set to be levied on major polluters from mid2012.

Canberra argues the tax will reduce harmful emissions, help slow global warming and save natural treasures such as the Great Barrier Reef, but critics believe it will not make an impact globally and cut jobs at home.

Gillard said Australia and Europe, which has already established an emissions trading scheme, would work on linking their mechanisms in the future.

Both Australia and the EU recognise that carbon markets are the most costeffective way of reducing greenhouse gases and creating clean energy jobs, Gillard said.

The president and I have agreed today to establish senior officials talks to discuss economytoeconomy measures we can jointly undertake to link our emissions trading schemes at the appropriate time in the future.

Barrosos visit to Australia, one of the worlds worst per capita polluters due to its performance wear reliance on mining exports and coalfired power, is the first by a European Commission chief in some three decades. performance wear