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Tank discount fizzles out: First call for abolition

The 1.6. introduced fuel discount is not with the drivers, now there are first demands for an early abolition. An excess profit tax is also being discussed.

As a central part of the federal government's relief package because of the high energy costs, the energy tax on fuels was reduced at the beginning of June for a limited period until the end of August: 30 cents for a liter of petrol and 14 cents for a liter of diesel. But the fuel price only went down significantly at the start of the tank discount, and rose massively again in the days that followed . The criticism: The mineral oil companies do not pass the tax cut on to consumers, but instead maximize their profits – with quasi state subsidies.

Politicians are calling for the tank discount to be abolished

Now the first calls for the early abolition of the tank discount are being made. Lower Saxony's Energy Minister Olaf Lies (SPD) demanded: "With every cent that does not reach the citizen, we as the state subsidize corporate profits. A result of the examination must then also be the premature cancellation of the discount."

The President of the German Institute for Economic Research (DIW), Marcel Fratzscher, also spoke up via Twitter and asked: "Many had predicted that the fuel price brake would be counterproductive and, above all, end up in the pockets of the oil companies. How would it be if politicians admit their mistake and stop the fuel price brake immediately?"

Gas station association sees fuel price at 2.60 euros

The gas station interest group (TIV), which represents around 1,000 gas station leaseholders in Germany, accuses the mineral oil companies of enriching themselves from the consequences of the Ukraine war. "The petroleum companies are cashing in on a climate in the market that allows relatively high petrol prices," said a spokesman for the Stuttgarter Zeitung association and the Stuttgarter Nachrichten. According to the spokesman, the average price for Super will soon be over two euros again and "and in August we will end up at 2.10 or 2.20 euros". When the discount expires, the "rude awakening" follows. "Then, according to our estimates, we'll be left with prices between 2.30 and 2.60 euros."

The Greens member of the Bundestag, Renate Künast, also spoke out in favor of spending budget funds "differently and more specifically to relieve consumers." In the ARD morning show on Tuesday (June 7), she said: "Here we actually have a discount that goes into the pockets of the oil companies and doesn't even have a control effect." It was right to discuss ending the tank discount, said Künast. It is also right to discuss an excess profit tax for mineral oil companies.

Excess profit tax in the Federal Council

This excess profit tax aims to skim off corporate profits that were not generated from your own economic performance. Bremen's Mayor Andreas Bovenschulte (SPD), together with the states of Berlin and Thuringia, submitted a corresponding application to the Bundesrat on Friday (10 June). In their motion for a resolution, the three countries refer to the industry-related solidarity levy in Italy and the EU Commission's proposal for temporary extraordinary profit taxation.

As planned, the template was referred to the technical committees for further consultation. They will deal with it from June 20, 2022. "According to the three federal states, the Bundesrat should ask the federal government to submit a proposal for the temporary levying of an excess profit tax for the year 2022 in order to prove crisis-related excess profits, especially in the energy sector, with a tax or levy. This is intended to finance state relief measures." , it says in the Federal Council communication.

Federal Minister of Finance and FDP leader Christian Lindner has categorically ruled out an excess profit tax. This would make tax law arbitrary, more opaque and even more bureaucratic, he said.

In our photo show we show you how the fuel price is made up.


The tank discount does not reach the consumer, the mineral oil companies, which are not legally obliged to pass it on, make a profit. At the expense of us consumers, after all, tax subsidies cost us around 3.5 billion euros. But should you still hold on to the discount? The first politicians and associations are speaking out against it. In addition, there is also a discussion about skimming off the profits of the mineral oil companies with an excess profit tax. Bremen has now submitted a corresponding Federal Council draft. Will all of this help consumption now and here around immediately in view of the high fuel prices? Certainly not.


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