Written Answers. - Excise Levels.

Trevor Sargent


500 Mr. Sargent asked the Minister for Finance the plans, if any, he has for the reversal of the favourable excise level which applies to diesel use for public transport in order to improve urban air quality; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [1540/99]

The provisions to which the Deputy refers are of long-standing duration and were confirmed in Council Directive 97/425/EC.

The excise repaid during 1998 under the scheduled passenger road transport services scheme amounted to approximately £14.3 million. I have no plans to seek an amendment to the law in this regard.