High fuel prices places Irish industries at a disadvantage in comparison with other European countries. This is according to Kildare North Deputy Bernard Durkan in an Oireachtas Debate last week where he asked the Minister for Finance about its engagement with Irish road haulage representatives on this issue.

In a written reply to Deputy Durkan’s query last week, the Finance Minister said a working group was set up last year with the Irish Road Haulage Association, Department officials, the Revenue Commissioners and public representatives to examine the issue of fuel prices.

“In Budget 2013 I announced that I would be introducing a commercial diesel relief thus allowing qualifying hauliers to reclaim a proportion of the mineral oil tax paid on auto-diesel purchased for qualifying vehicles,” the minister stated.

Provision was made to allow for this tax relief, which will apply to purchases made on or after 1 July this year. The amount to be repaid will vary by reference to the price at which auto-diesel is purchased, subject to a maximum repayment of 7.5 cent per litre.

“The Revenue Commissioner, who are charged with implementing the repayment scheme, met with representatives of the IRHA on 10 April 2013 to outline the operation of the scheme and to answer queries,” Deputy Noonan stated.

It is understood a meeting was held just last week on 20 June for a further briefing on this scheme.

“The Revenue Commissioners expect to hold further meetings with the IRHA and other transport operator representatives in preparation for the commencement of the scheme,” the Finance Minister concluded.

Meanwhile, a trucker tax break on fuel comes into force today, 1 July.  The ‘rebate’ on diesel costs for hauliers will mean refunds on part of the excise duty on fuel paid by tax-compliant haulage companies.

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