SPAIN Car tax in Spain (known as Impuesto de Circulación but officially as Impuesto sobre Vehículos de Tracción Mecánica) is managed and paid to the municipality where the vehicle is registered. New regulations, which come into force at the beginning of next year, rule that the criteria for this tax should from then on be based on the vehicle's emissions instead of on its horsepower as at present. An environmental measure, certainly, and one that will probably increase municipal incomes considerably because Spain's vehicles average among the oldest in Europe. Calculations on the annual tax will depend on>>>the amount of CO2, nitrogen oxide (NOx) and particles that come from the vehicle's exhaust, according to scales provided by the EU and managed by the central government's Dirección General de Tributos del Ministerio de Hacienda (Directorate General of Payments of the Treasury) together with the Federación Española de Municipios y Provincias (FEMP). The EU directive also says that 'no excuses of a social character will be taken into account', presumably referring to those whose car tax goes up to unmanageable levels because they can't afford a newer car. On the other hand, 'certain flexibility' will be allowed to municipalities, though the objective here is presumably to permit municipalities with higher pollution indices to ''disincentivate' car usage. Car taxes in Spain raised some €2,807 million in 2011, and municipalities are at present allowed to up them by a maximum of 2%.