Tag Archives: licensed marked fuel traders

Green diesel: reasoned opinion [updated]

Some news on one of our favourite topics.

The European Commission has formally requested Ireland to amend its legislation to ensure that private pleasure boats can no longer buy lower taxed fuel intended for fishing boats. Under EU rules on fiscal marking for fuels, fuel that can benefit from a reduced tax rate has to be marked by coloured dye. Fishing vessels for example are allowed to benefit from fuel subject to a lower tax rate but private boats must use fuel subject to a standard rate. Currently, Ireland breaches EU law by allowing the use of marked fuel for the purposes of propelling private pleasure craft. As a consequence, private leisure boats can not only use fuel intended for fishing vessels, subject to a lower taxation, but also risk heavy penalties if they travel to another Member State and the ship is checked by the local authorities. The Commission’s request takes the form of a reasoned opinion. In the absence of a satisfactory response within two months, the Commission may refer Ireland to the EU’s Court of Justice.

European Commission press release dated 16 April 2014, about three quarters of the way down the page.

Update: I see that the Irish Examiner noticed the EC statement. And NESC believes (sensibly) that green diesel should be scrapped altogether. Which won’t happen, because if you didn’t have unnecessary or ridiculous regulations Irish politicians wouldn’t be able to pretend to be doing something useful by playing with them.


Mineral Oil Tax returns for 2013

I have been pointing out for many years that the Mineral Oil Tax is paid by only a tiny minority of Irish boat-owners, although it should be paid by all those who use rebated (green) diesel for propulsion of private pleasure craft. You can read my previous postings here, here, here and here, with information on how to pay, in 2014, the tax due for 2013 here.

Twelve months ago I gave the figures for the years 2009–2012.

In 2010, 38 boat-owners paid the tax for 2009.

In 2011, 41 boat-owners paid the tax for 2010.

In 2012, 22 boat-owners paid the tax for 2011. The total amount received was €53,398.58 on 141,503.29 litres of diesel, an average of 6432.1 litres per return; I reckoned that much of that figure was accounted for by the hire fleets.

In 2013, 23 boat-owners paid the tax for 2012. The total amount received was €113,841.45 on 301,674 litres of diesel. I was unable to explain the increase.

I now have the latest figures. In 2014, 20 boat-owners paid the tax for 2013. The amount received was €105,561.74 on 279,842.4  litres of diesel. This is the smallest number of returns since the idiotic tax was introduced.

I have suggested to the Revenue Commissioners that they should compare the reported total number of litres of diesel bought with the total sales reported by those Licensed Marked Fuel Traders who sell at marinas. The licensing system has been in operation since October 2012 so Revenue should be able to determine the total sales for 2013 and compare them with the reported purchases. The match is unlikely to be exact but the orders of magnitude would be interesting. If Revenue releases the figures to me I will report them here.


Too much excitement …

… is bad for me, so I haven’t checked the list of licensed marked fuel traders [.xls] for some time. As a result, I may be late in noting the addition to the list of Shannon Sailing at Dromineer on Lough Derg. This is, I think , the most southerly point on the non-tidal Shannon at which boaters can legally buy green diesel.

If …

… Revenue can operate a diesel rebate scheme for road hauliers and bus operators, why can’t it do the same for farmers?

And if it can do that, what further reason is there for the continued existence of marked (green) diesel?

The multitudinous seas incarnadine …

… making the green one read? The green one being the list of licensed marked fuel (green diesel) traders [xls], which shows no new licensed traders on the Shannon, the Erne or (since list week’s addition of Lowtown Marine) the Grand Canal.

Forward, forward let us range …

… Let the great world spin for ever down the ringing grooves of change.

Excitable chap, Tennyson. But there are no ringing grooves in the list of licensed traders in marked fuels along the Shannon.

Nonetheless, the excitement of reading 211 pages of traders’ names and addresses, at four to the page, never palls. I have to read them, alas, as the data entry is so inconsistent that searching could not be relied upon (Mullinger, anyone?). It would be nice if someone cleaned up the data.

The entries are arranged in order of county, or more specifically in alphabetical order by entry in the County field. Thus all the traders in Dublin postal districts come at the end. But the list is headed by two traders who have no entries in the county field. One is Tigh Phlunkett of Leitir Moir; the other is Homefuels Direct Ltd of Stockton on Tees, the only non-Irish licence-holder.

There. Wasn’t that interesting?

You are changing/said death to the maiden …

… your wan face
To memory, to beauty.

Thus Kathleen Raine, but not the list of licensed marked fuel traders [.xls] along the Shannon.

The diesel monopoly

I wrote here about the Revenue Commissioners’ new Marked Fuel Trader’s Licence. In brief, anyone selling marked fuel oil [green diesel] has to pay €250 to get a Marked Fuel Trader’s Licence and must also make monthly returns to Revenue of all “oil movements”. I thought, but I wasn’t sure, that this applied to marinas and others selling fuel for private pleasure navigation; as far as I could see at the time, none of those selling fuel along the Irish inland waterways had registered.

I have two pieces of news about that.

First, the Revenue Commissioners have confirmed that the new scheme does apply to sales of marked fuel for private pleasure navigation: in other words, those selling green diesel for boats along the inland waterways should all be registered under the scheme.

Second, I am happy to say that there is now at least one registered seller: Ciaran Fallon of Rooskey Craft & Tackle at Rooskey Quay. (There may be others that I haven’t spotted; you can check the latest list of Licensed Marked Fuel Traders here.) For the moment, then, Rooskey Craft & Tackle seems to have a monopoly of the legal supply of marked fuel on the Irish inland waterways.

Finally, on a somewhat related matter, here is the form [PDF] for making mineral oil tax returns for 2012. The numbers of returns received so far have been 38 in 2009, 41 in 2010 and 22 in 2011.