Nearly two and a half years after major problems regarding vapour recovery were first raised with the Government and HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC), a Treasury minister has finally agreed to meet representatives of the PRA.
Chairman Brian Madderson and taxation expert Alan Powell are scheduled to meet the recently appointed economic secretary Nicky Morgan on December 17.
Top of the agenda, said Madderson, will be the retailer-funded Barlow Powell Report, which was published in mid-2011. It looked into the issue of vapour recovery and how oil companies were being given tax credits for vapour lost during delivery, when the fuel, and therefore the vapour lost from it, had been paid for by retailers, and was therefore their property.
The report, which was verified by legal experts, found that HMRC’s supervision of vapour recovery was "unlawful and unjustly enriches the suppliers from the public purse". Madderson said: "The average independent forecourt could be overcharged by £6,000 a year for fuel that has not been physically received due to the measurement/vapour recovery issue."
In addition to the vapour issue, he said they would also be raising HMRC’s obstruction of the duty deferment process and the potential to move the duty point to the forecourt.