Thursday, October 25, 2012

Temporary rebate on fuel could save jobs – O’ Súilleabháin

Sinn Féin is calling for the introduction of a temporary fuel rebate for transport firms.  Local spokesperson Fionntán O’ Súilleabháin said that such a rebate was common in other European nations and stressed that its introduction here would save jobs.  Mr O’ Súilleabháin highlighted the recent loss of local jobs due to the closure of Target Express as an example of why a fuel tax rebate was a necessity.

Mr O’ Súilleabháin said;

“Last year the Irish Road Haulage Association claimed that this state is losing €200 million a year in revenue because we don’t offer a fuel tax rebate for hauliers.  Haulage licenses have dropped by 1300 in the last three years.  This is estimated to represent 10,000 job losses.  We have seen this close to home with the recent local job losses brought on by the closure of Target Express.”

“Under an EU energy directive member states have the right to lower their diesel tax rates for commercial vehicles, which are defined as lorries over 7.5 tonnes.  Several member states including Belgium, Spain and France make these fuel tax rebates available.  This results in Irish haulage companies being forced to buy their fuel in these countries in order to compete.  This results in a loss of revenue for our state.”

“The introduction of a rebate here would have a net positive effect for the economy if a deal could be struck with haulage firms to purchase the bulk of their fuel in this state.  The IRHA has estimated that the government is missing out on €650 in excise and €340 in VAT per week from each haulier who filled his truck with diesel while abroad.”

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