Due to the French 2015 Finance Law (Loi de Finances pour 2015) making adjustments to existing tax rules last year, mutterings in the industry have suggested that this could mean a pending ‘petroleum tax’ could be brought in sooner rather than later.

The tax would allegedly increase the price for commercial yachts fueling up in France by 47 cents per litre and some feel that this would have a significant influence on where yachts choose to fuel up in the Mediterranean.

Lobbying on behalf of the European Committee for Professional Yachting (ECPY), and the wider industry, Thierry Voisin Is currently in discussions with the custom and tax authorities and assures that there is no change for the time being.

“What I am requesting from the authorities is that it is too late to enforce it for this season, but that if it is enforceable, to enforce it in 2016,” he explains. “Whether they will listen or not I do not know. We are doing it on behalf of the industry and very soon we should have some announcements.

“Everybody is trying to find a solution. There might be a solution for non-EU vessels to get duty free fuel but this will not help the EU-flagged vessels. So it is going to be a real mess.”

The pressure is coming from the European Commission, whose task it is to police the EU’s tax rules in the interests of maintaining a level competitive playing field across 28 Member States, which resulted in France modifying the finance law last year. Because the pending tax is a custom tax, unlike VAT, it is up to the custom office to decide how it will be implemented. Until the custom office come up with an official decision, therefore, this taxation is pending.

SuperyachtNews.com will keep readers informed with any further developments on the matter. This matter, and similar fiscal topics, will be discussed at next month's Superyacht Management Meeting: Fiscal.

This year's Superyacht Management Meeting: Fiscal, will be taking place in Monaco on 28 April. This event represents a new frontier for the industry, where key stakeholders will assemble to affect genuine change for superyacht the industry.

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