Dáil Éireann - Volume 405 - 20 February, 1991
Written Answers. - EC Energy Tax.
Mr. Barry Mr. Barry
89. Mr. Barry asked the Minister for Industry and Commerce if his Department have assessed the effects on industry and services in this country of the proposed $10 per barrel energy tax as proposed by the EC; the results of this assessment; and if he will make a statement on the matter.
Minister for Industry and Commerce (Mr. O'Malley) Desmond J. O'Malley
Minister for Industry and Commerce (Mr. O'Malley): I assume the Deputy is referring to recent Commission proposals in relation to excise duties on petrol,  leaded and unleaded, diesel and kerosene and on which the Commission issued a press release last week. These proposals update the target rates for excise duties on petrol and revise the target excise duty band proposed for road diesel towards which excise duties in the member states would converge over time. They also incorporate a supplement for CO² content which works out at close to the $10 per barrel to which the Deputy refers in his question. The Deputy will be aware that the Minister for Finance leads generally on behalf of the Government on the discussions with the Commission in relation to the harmonisation of taxes, including those on energy products. The proposals are still at a stage of preliminary discussion and my Department are keeping in close contact with industrial representatives and with other Departments on the matter.
A preliminary assessment would indicate that since, for the petrol and kerosene products covered in the Commission's recent proposals, the target rates are higher than existing Irish excise rates — which are higher on average than those which obtain at present in other Community countries — general Community convergence towards the target rates would, therefore, reduce any cost disadvantage suffered by industry and services in this country. In the case of road diesel the current Irish excise rate is marginally higher than the top of the range of excise duty proposed and the Commission's present proposals would not disimprove the relative position as far as industry and services in this country are concerned.
Dáil Éireann 405 Written Answers. EC Energy Tax.