Clare T.D. and Chairman of the Oireachtas Committee on Foreign Affairs and Trade has today (Tuesday), welcomed the announcement by the Minister for Finance, Michael Noonan TD, that road tax for HGVs over 12 tonnes will be reduced in next year’s Budget. Minister Noonan was speaking following a meeting he attended with the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, Paschal Donohoe TD and the Irish Road Haulage Association during which they discussed the difference between costs for HGV operators in Ireland and the United Kingdom.
“I am very pleased that progress is being made on this issue as I have been working with the Hauliers representatives and in regular contact with both Minsters pushing the case for the hauliers. The Minister for Finance Michael Noonan T.D. has now committed to reducing road tax on vehicles in this category, starting in next year’s Budget, with a tapering of the reduction for vehicles below 12,000 kg. Any further changes to the motor tax regime based on the work of the Interdepartmental Group may also be introduced through the Budgetary process.
“The haulage industry is very important to Ireland as a small, open, exporting economy and it is estimated that there are 50,000 jobs in the Irish Haulage Industry. HGVs of over 12 tonnes have significant motor tax charges and the reduction proposed by Minister will be very welcome for Hauliers as they have high operating costs.
“There are other problems affecting hauliers and these issues were discussed by the Ministers and the Irish Road Haulage Association during their meeting. They in particular focused on the differences between costs for operators in Ireland and the United Kingdom.
“I understand that this meeting was very constructive and that it will build on the interdepartmental working group on HGV motor tax established earlier this year.
In response to the Hauliers Concerns, the Government had established a working Group comprised of Department of Finance officials, representatives of the Irish Road Hauliers Association and members of the Oireachtas. A consultation paper will now issue by the end of November 2014, seeking the views of hauliers and other stakeholders on the options for reform of the commercial vehicle motor tax regime and that on completion of this consultation process, the Group will submit a report for Ministers with proposals for changes to the commercial vehicle motor tax regime. Some of the options they are examining include the rebalancing of the commercial motor tax bands to give more favourable rates to HGVs which cause less damage to the environment or possibly introducing a pay-as-you-go charge for HGVs.
I would encourage those in the industry to take part in this consultation and to have their views heard as we need to ensure that HGV operators can run a profitable business throughout Ireland and the UK.”