Fuels: Tax Evasion

Northern Ireland Office written question – answered on 5th February 2015.

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Photo of Lord Empey Lord Empey UUP

To ask Her Majesty’s Government what discussions they have had with the government of the Republic of Ireland about the risks to health posed by the by products of illegally laundered fuel being dumped into waterways in the border areas; and whether they will put this matter on the agenda for a future meeting of the British–Irish Council.

Photo of Baroness Randerson Baroness Randerson Lords Spokesperson (Northern Ireland Office), The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Wales

Managing the risks posed by the by-products of illegally laundered fuel is a devolved matter for the Northern Ireland Executive. I understand that fuel laundering is regularly on the agenda when the Justice Minister David Ford meets his counterpart in the Republic of Ireland; and that the Minister for the Environment, Mark H. Durkan, regularly discusses waste crime in North South Ministerial Council meetings.

In related areas, HM Revenue and Customs is active in promoting cross-border co-operation to tackle fuel laundering, including through chairing meetings of the Cross Border Fuel Group, which includes representatives of the PSNI, NCA, Environment Agency and their opposite numbers from the Republic of Ireland.

The British Irish Council is a forum for co-operation on matters of mutual interest between the eight Member Administrations. It may not therefore be the best means of raising issues which specifically concern only some of those Members. We shall continue, however, to make all the efforts we can to ensure the most effective co-operation on these issues.

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