Jobs in the midlands will be lost unless lower road tax is introduced for trucks, according to Laois-Offaly TD Brian Stanley.
He claimed that the high taxes here have already forced some hauliers to move their bases to the North and Britain, with many more considering moving.
“Ireland has the highest tax on HGVs in the EU,” he said. “Road tax on an articulated truck here is approximately €3,500 while in Britain it’s around €850.
“The current system is outdated and needs changing,” Deputy Stanley continued. “We also need to address the cost of testing trailers for road worthiness. The cert needs to be valid for one year from the date of the test to take account of the fact that trailers can be parked up and unused for months.”
Deputy Stanley said that English and Scottish registered trucks are coming in and doing the runs out of Ireland, leaving local hauliers unable to compete. He suggested a €10 levy be put on all foreign trucks entering Irish ports.
“The playing field has to be levelled to give Irish hauliers an opportunity to compete, otherwise there will be massive job losses and a big drop in revenue to the exchequer,”
Deputy Stanley concluded.