Some of the Budget 2024 measures came into force at midnight after the Dáil voted to increase tobacco duties and maintain the lower VAT rate on household energy bills.
While the vote means pending excise increases on petrol and diesel have been deferred until next year, fuel prices at petrol and diesel pumps went up overnight because of an increase in the carbon tax.
From midnight €1.28 and €1.48 was added to the cost of a 60-litre fill of petrol and diesel respectively.
There will be a €7.50 increase on the current rate of carbon tax that is applied per tonne of carbon dioxide emissions by carbon fuels.
This will bring the carbon tax rate up to €56.00 per tonne.
The increase in carbon tax will subsequently be applied to all other carbon fuels, including solid fuels and home heating oil, but not until 1 May 2024.
It will add 90 cents to the cost of a 40kg bag of coal and 20 cents to the price of a bale of briquettes from the start of May.
It will also add €19.40 to the cost of filling a 900-litre tank of home heating oil or kerosene.
In addition, it will add €16.98 for 11,000 kilowatt hours of natural gas, which according to the Commission for Energy Regulation is the average household usage of natural gas per year.
The restoration of the final tranche of the temporary cut in normal excise duty on petrol and diesel had originally been scheduled to happen on 31 October this year.
However, Minister for Finance Michael McGrath announced in the Budget that this restoration, which will add another 8 cents to the cost of a litre of petrol and 7 cents on a litre of diesel, is being temporarily postponed.
It will now be applied in two equal instalments on 1 April and 1 August next year instead.
In the Dáil, Minister for Environment Eamon Ryan said that petrol would now increase by 4 cents a litre on 1 April next.
On the same day, there would be a 3 cent a litre hike on diesel, and a 1.7 cent a litre on gas and oil.
Further hikes would come on 1 August 2024 – 4 cents a litre on petrol; four centres a litre on diesel.
The minister said that the total cost of the measure was €171m.
Revenues raised by the carbon tax amounting to €788m are ringfenced for climate action related supports.
In 2024, €308m of this money is being allocated for investment in residential and community energy efficiency, €262m will be spent on targeted social protection interventions, €113m is being allocated to incentivising farmers to operate in a greener more sustainable way, and €33m is for the Carbon tax Investment programme.
Minister McGrath increased excise duty on a packet of 20 cigarettes by 75 cents, bringing the price to €16.75. This increase has been implemented since midnight.
Minister McGrath also said that he plans on introducing a tax on e-cigarettes and vaping products in next year’s Budget.
“In light of public health interests, continuing delays to the revision of the Tobacco Products Tax Directive and the Programme for Government commitment to tax e-cigarettes and vaping products, I am proposing to introduce a domestic tax on these products in next year’s Budget,” the minister said.
He said that considerable preparatory work will need to be carried out by his department and Revenue in drafting the legislation.