A relaxation of excise duty levels on petrol and diesel need to be relaxed by Government to ease the significant burden of rising prices on motorists, according to independent TD Michael Fitzmaurice.

As it stands, taxes represent at least 50% of the retail price of diesel or petrol. A breakdown published by the AA stated that the price of petrol at the pump was 177.3c per litre, but before taxes were added it stood at 79.375c per litre. Excise equated to almost 63c and VAT 33c. This was calculated when the average price of a barrel of oil was $95.

Speaking on the matter, Fitzmaurice said: “Given all that has emerged this week with the situation in Ukraine, we have seen the average price of a barrel of oil jump to $105. This going to have serious knock-on effects for motorists here.

“At a time when the cost of living was already a significant concern in Ireland, the further impacts of the conflict in Ukraine will only deepen the financial struggles people will face here.

“Therefore, it is up to the Government to ease the burden where possible. The cost of fuel at the pumps can be softened by reducing its taxation and giving ordinary motorists a reprieve.

“Even Marked Gas Oil, or green diesel, is headed north of a euro a litre. The agriculture sector, from farmers to agricultural contractors, will struggle to keep machines on the road to do essential work if this upward trajectory continues.

“This is on top of fertiliser prices trebling and the cost of meal increasing also.

“This is indeed difficult times, and the Government needs to be proactive in ensuring ordinary people are not pushed beyond the brink,” he concluded.

For further information contact Michael Fitzmaurice at 086-1914565

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