Driving To Deliver Your Business

Environment minister Denis Naughten holds no truck with diesel tax rise

Environment minister opposes increased tariffs on fuel amid fears it would hurt the haulage industry

Stephen O’Brien, Political Editor

Denis Naughten wants more drivers to switch to electric and hybrid vehicles — but cannot penalise those who bought diesel because of government incentivesMAXWELLPHOTOGRAPHY.IE

Denis Naughten, the climate change and environment minister, has signalled his opposition to increasing diesel prices, because of the Brexit threat to the Irish haulage industry. Whether to reduce the gap between diesel and petrol prices through carbon taxes is one of the key decisions facing Paschal Donohoe, the finance minister, ahead of October’s budget. Yet Naughten has promised that the government will be sensitive to the needs of the trucking sector, and the fact that Ireland’s high ownership of diesel cars has been driven by official government policy.

“People were heavily incentivised and that was government policy — we have to accept that,” said Naughten. “You can’t penalise people overnight for a change in government policy. I am conscious of that. “Transport is not…

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