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Varadkar won’t lower tax on fuel until EU decides bloc’s response

According to AA Ireland, petrol and diesel costs are at record highs as Applegreen warns of massive increases in fuel costs for consumers.

The comments come as fuel prices soar across Europe due to a variety of factors. These include inflation, supply chain issues from the Covid lockdown, government charges like Carbon Tax, and overreliance on Russian gas amid the ongoing Ukraine invasion.

The cost of running an average family car has reportedly increased over €900 per year since before the pandemic. AA Ireland has called for a cut in the excise duty on petrol and diesel as a way to improve the situation.

Despite these calls, Tánaiste Leo Varadkar has said he would not move to reduce taxes on fuel until the EU agrees to act as a whole, drawing criticism from some social media users.

“Have they ceded all power to the EU? They don’t seem to be able to do anything on their own initiative these days except claim salaries and pensions,” said user @DublinComments.

“So now we cannot even determine our tax revenue composition without an EU Commission paper,” said @connollyrp.

“We truly are a county council of Europe now. Shameful.”

“There was me thinking Ireland could decide its own financial affairs. How naive,” added @Gill_i_bix.

Last year, Independent TD Richard O’Donoghue said that taxes were a major contributing factor to high fuel costs.

“For every €100 of fuel that is manufactured, do the people of Ireland know what the Government take from that is?” asked O’Donoghue.

“The manufacturer of petrol receives €39.92; the local shopkeeper gets €3.08 for every €100 of petrol in a person’s tank; and the Government, which has nothing to do with manufacturing or putting the petrol into the cars, gets a whopping €57 out of every €100 of petrol that goes into every person in Ireland’s car.”

He added that per €100 of diesel, the manufacturer receives €44.38, while the local shopkeeper will get €3.08, or between 4 cent or 5 cent per litre.

“Meanwhile,” he said, “the Government will come away with a whopping €51.94 of every €100 of fuel bought.”

He added: “I often hear people say the shopkeeper is robbing them through fuel. The shopkeeper is not robbing them through fuel; the Government is. They are the most robbing, thieving people and they are so anti-rural.”

In 2019 AA Ireland described Ireland’s carbon tax hikes as little more than a “cash grab dressed up as a green initiative,” saying it would do little to help the climate.

Ireland is the 14th most expensive country in Europe to buy petrol, and the 21st most expensive in the world.


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