Seanad debates

Thursday, 21 March 2024

Nithe i dtosach suíonna - Commencement Matters

Fuel Prices

9:30 am

Photo of Niall CollinsNiall Collins (Limerick County, Fianna Fail) | Oireachtas source

The Government recognises that the decision by the UK Government not to restore its excise rates means that the differential for petrol, in particular, will increase between Northern Ireland and this jurisdiction. The Senator will be aware that Ireland and Northern Ireland operate significantly different tax regimes. For example, the VAT rate in the UK is 20% and the UK does not have a carbon tax. Furthermore, Ireland operates a diesel rebate scheme for essential road users and there is a VAT reclaim on diesel for commercial uses. These factors all impact a dynamic and variable effective fuel price, especially for businesses, which will likely be quite different in a pump price comparison. In addition, it is important to note that the national average prices have eased considerably from highs of more than €2 per litre in 2022. As per the Central Statistics Office consumer price index, the average national retail prices of auto diesel and petrol have decreased from approximately €1.85 per litre in October 2023 to approximately €1.72 per litre for diesel and €1.71 for petrol in February 2024. More recently, the European Commission weekly oil bulletin shows that the national average price as of 18 March 2024 was approximately €1.73 for petrol and €1.74 for auto diesel. I will take on board the concerns the Senator has raised and convey them to the Minister for Finance.


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