Currently, the taxation on petroleum fuels (unleaded & diesel) is 58p per litre plus VAT. In the EU, the average is around the 50p mark (plus VAT in some countries for unleaded). This means for every litre of unleaded about 70p is pure tax – 61% pure tax (based on a litre of fuel costing 113.9p). This will rise when VAT increases next year.
Diesel has a bigger difference. The taxation in Europe on diesel fuels is about 40p (+ VAT)
If we are to compete with the EU in terms of haulage and other costs of transportation, our tax rates need to be kept in line with those of the EU.
An alterative to the change in taxation is the removal of the tax disc. While this is another revenue earner for the exchequer, the funds from it are rarely seen going back to the upkeep of the infrastructure and the money made from it could be absorbed easily into the taxation already on fuel.