Fuel duty freeze ‘good news’

The UK’s largest fuel retailers association has tentatively welcomed a fuel duty freeze in Wednesday’s budget.

Chancellor George Osbourne was expected to slightly increase tax on petrol and diesel during his first Conservative budget, but surprised many by freezing the rate.

PRA chairman Brian Madderson said the PRA had been lobbying the Government and Treasury for a cut to fuel duty ahead of the budget, but said it was “good news” the rate remained unchanged.

Mr Madderson said he believed a cut to the rate would boost the economy.

“The PRA feels disappointed the Chancellor has ignored both ours and many other motoring organisations’ pleas to cut duty by at least two pence per litre.

“This would be a positive move which would boost the economy and improve household expenditure.

“While oil prices are expected to stay low, the oil market is notoriously hard to predict so there is always the chance that fuel prices will be considerably higher by the time of the budget in March 2016 and any increase in duty would therefore have a negative effect on the economy.”