British Marine 'disappointed' at removal of red diesel subsidy

Published: Friday, 13 March 2020

FOLLOWING on the comment of the Royal Yachting Association yesterrday, British Marine too is concerned at the removal of the subsidy on red diesel for recreational boating, explaining:

Much to the disappointment of British Marine, the chancellor announced that the subsidy on red diesel would be removed for most sectors, but would remain available for agricultural purposes, fishing and domestic heating.

Take effect in two years

This follows speculations in different news outlets that the chancellor was considering such a move.  We understand the changes are not due to take effect for another two years and industry will be consulted on whether the entitlement to use red diesel and rebated biofuels is justified for any other users, including the continued use by ferries carrying paid passengers on the UK’s rivers and inland waterways, or public entertainment.

Commercial boats on open waters, including ferries and fishing boats, will remain entitled to the Marine Voyages Relief so will not have to pay more for their fuel. 

Particularly disappointing

Commenting on the Budget, Lesley Robinson, CEO at British Marine explained:

“It is particularly disappointing to see the subsidy on red diesel being removed across some sectors.  This subsidy is of huge importance to our members in the recreational and small commercial boating sector which is heavily reliant on the use of red diesel to power recreational craft and many larger vessels.

“Our latest statistics show that participation in boating has increased over the last year and the UK’s leisure marine industry is thriving, all of which could be at risk if the chancellor goes ahead with this decision and removes the subsidy for our sector.

 “We understand that government will consult industry later this year and will be engaging closely with HM Treasury and HMRC officials to ensure our concerns and those of our members are fully represented and understood.”