Wednesday, October 3, 2018

Fuel Duty Freeze Will Please Freight and Road Haulage Interests

Campaigners Delighted by Ninth Successive Tax Announcement
Shipping News Feature
UK – FairFuel UK, the organisation launched in 2011 by long term industry stakeholder Howard Cox backed by both the Freight Transport Association (FTA) and the Road Haulage Association (RHA) has expressed satisfaction at the government's decision to freeze fuel duty for the 9th consecutive year. The organisation has in the past called the Treasury 'disingenuous' for saying such an increase was necessary to fund the NHS.

FairFuel this year submitted an economic analysis by the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR) to the Treasury which it says demonstrated that Chancellor that Philip Hammond at the despatch box was not telling the truth in respect to the Exchequer losing £46 billion of tax levy hikes since 2011. It claimed this was distortion and, had the fuel price escalator been in place, drivers would have been paying £1.70 per litre at the pumps.

The argument ran that the CEBR analysis suggests that the freezing of fuel duty may help the Treasury to save approximately £14.5 billion in yearly financing costs over the long term. The lobbying outfit said that ‘taking Mr Hammond’s approach of distorting the facts, the freeze in duty has put billions back into the economy creating a net gain no a loss in tax revenue’. Speaking of the latest news, Howard Cox said:

“The ‘just about managing’ will breathe a huge sigh of relief that duty is frozen for the 9th year. Thank you, Prime Minister, for seeing common sense. It’s now time for this fragile Conservative Government to work with 37 million drivers to put together a long-term strategic road transport plan that motivates tax payers, the economy and the environment. Mr Hammond should also look into the mirror and ask why he is so out of touch with reality.”

The UK currently has one of the highest fuel duties in the world at 57.95ppl, despite the freeze in 2011 to date. At 25 September 2018 spot exchange rates, German fuel duty comes in at 50.5ppl, Australia is at 21ppl and while the USA’s average level is 10.4ppl. Robert Halfon MP for Harlow who has supported the campaign to keep duty down on hearing that the Prime Minister would announce the latest freeze at the Conservative Party Conference, said:

"Great news after a strong campaign with FairFuelUK and Howard Cox. Motorists are safe for another year. Delighted that the Treasury has listened to millions of drivers across the UK. Fact remains lower fuel duty means a boost to the economy".