Fuel prices have been rising for months, and seeing 2 euros per liter displayed at the pump has almost become commonplace.

For some Internet users, while the French and the French are ruined to be able to move, the government is filling their pockets.

A publication, shared in recent weeks on social networks, affirms that the State receives around 70 billion euros per year thanks to fuel taxes.

The calculation is detailed there: at a rate of 60% tax on a liter of fuel costing 2.15 euros [according to the example in question], the State pockets 1.25 euro.

We multiply by the 160 million liters sold each day, then over the year.

The sum obtained is astronomical.

"Now you know who pays the 'Whatever it takes'!"

“, write the internet users.


The figures used for these calculations are false, and state revenues are inflated.

Let's take the information in order to see more clearly.

French motorists do not buy 160 million liters of fuel per day, contrary to what the publication claims.

According to the French Union of Petroleum Industries (Ufip), consumption was 48.2 billion liters in 2021, i.e. 131.5 million liters purchased daily.

Next, let's move on to taxes.

The government website clearly indicates that “in France, taxes account for approximately 60% of the price of petrol and diesel at the pump.

But this is no longer the case today, due to the sharp rise in prices for several months.

In detail, the taxes applied to fuels by the State are the VAT, the internal consumption tax on energy products (TICPE) and the VAT on the TICPE.

The last two are fixed, and only the VAT varies according to the price of the petroleum product or the costs of transport and distribution.

So that with a sharp rise in oil prices, the share of the tax on the final price, it decreases.

According to the breakdown of prices on July 1 by Ufip, the share going to the State on diesel is 0.953 euros for a liter at 2.06 euros.

On the unleaded 95 side, it pockets 1.038 euros for a liter at 2.08 euros.

We are therefore far from the 1.25 euro as advanced by the publication.

Instead of 60% of the sale price, the state revenue is closer to 45%.

Revenues below 49 billion euros

Thus, if all the fuels sold in France were taxed like petrol – the highest tax – we would obtain an annual revenue of 49 billion euros, well below the 70 announced.

But it is not that simple.

Added to the discount of 18 cents per liter in place since April.

This is a sum paid by the State directly to the distributors most upstream of the distribution network.

This should represent a cost to public finances of at least 3.2 billion euros this year, according to the authorities.

Other factors may contribute to a reduction in government revenue in this area.

This is for example the case of VAT exemptions, especially for professionals.

New aid could also see the light of day soon for people who use their vehicle to get to work.

This “worker fuel allowance”, as Bercy calls it, would be paid “depending on the level of income”, explained Minister Bruno Le Maire, without specifying the ceiling which could be set.


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