In response to today's publication of the Commission on Taxation Report, Tom Noonan, the Chief Executive of The Maxol Group warned against an over enthusiastic rush to place an even greater tax burden on Ireland’s hard pressed motorists. "We need to be very alive to the danger of doing anything that will, in the current economic climate, further increase the number of people from the Republic shopping in Northern Ireland. If motor fuel is made more expensive here than it is there, it will neither assist the nation’s finances nor cut down on emissions. Instead, motorists will simply cross the border to fill up with petrol and, while there, buy other goods that they perceive to be the subject to lower taxation. Towns on the Republic side of the Border are already being severely hit by this phenomenon".
"Greater consideration could have been given to using Vehicle Registration Tax to promote the purchase of vehicles with low emissions. The Commission's proposal to phase out VRT by even further increases in tax on motor fuels, as originally put forward by the Society of the Irish Motor Industry, is simply a sop to the car lobby at the expense of those of us who are involved in oil importation and marketing in Ireland. If this proposal is taken seriously by the Government, then many existing car owners can look forward to even lower second hand values for their vehicles", added Noonan.