Council Directive 92/83/EEC on excise duty for alcohol and alcoholic beverages provides that a reduced rate of excise duty may be applied for beer produced in microbreweries. The reduced rate shall not be set more than 50% below the standard national rate of excise duty for beer. Since 1 January 2005, Ireland applies a relief of 50% on Alcohol Products Tax in respect of qualifying beer produced in microbreweries located within the European Union. The Directive also permits the application of reduced rates of excise duty to spirits produced by small distilleries, where production amounts to not more than 10 hectolitres (1,000 litres) of pure alcohol per annum. However, there are no provisions currently under national legislation for this relief and, consequently, spirits produced in a micro distillery are subject to the standard rate of excise duty.