Measurement and Testing

  • Government Freezes Fuel Duty in 2020 Budget

Government Freezes Fuel Duty in 2020 Budget

Mar 31 2020 Read 511 Times

In the latest attempt to protect British motorists, the government has confirmed a fuel duty freeze for the 11th consecutive year. While there was speculation the Johnson ministry would end the existing freeze on duty to keep up with inflation, the tax will remain at 57.95p per litre for both petrol and diesel. LPG will also remain unchanged, with a duty of 31.61ppl.

Budget offers "relief to drivers"

The Budget was unveiled by Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak, who says the fuel duty freeze is designed to support British motorists. The decision won praise from groups such as the RAC, with Head of Policy Nicholas Lyes saying, "We welcome the freeze in fuel duty, which will be a relief to drivers. While the Chancellor might have been tempted to increase duty, the reality is that for millions this would have simply increased their everyday driving costs and done nothing to encourage them to switch to cleaner vehicles."

Decision slammed by environmental groups

While Sunak's Budget was praised by some, environmental groups slammed the decision to freeze fuel duty. Since being introduced in 2011, the fuel duty freeze has resulted in a loss of more than £50 billion in revenue for the Treasury. Traffic has increased by 5% as a result of the freeze and critics estimate there have been 250 million less bus journeys and 75 million less rail journeys, as well as an additional 5 million tonnes of CO2 released into the atmosphere. The freeze has also resulted in an extra 15,000 tonnes of NOx emissions.

Claire Haigh, Chief Executive of British campaign group Greener Journeys says the decision to freeze fuel duty is a missed opportunity to reduce emissions and meet climate change targets. "As hosts of this year’s COP26 UN Climate Summit, the UK must show leadership on reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Ending the freeze in fuel duty would send a clear signal around the world that the UK is serious about meeting its net zero target," she says. Haigh also stressed that ending the fuel duty freeze would help to raise revenue at a time when the UK is reeling from the economic impact of the coronavirus.

Focus on plug-in car grant and rapid charging infrastructure investment

While the fuel duty freeze was met with mixed reviews, the Budget also outlined plans to extend the plug-in car grant and boost investment in rapid charging infrastructure. For Sunak, this reflects the governments intentions to support British motorists while simultaneously investing in the green technology of tomorrow.

As well as petrol and diesel, the fuel duty freeze also applied to LPG. To find out more about the latest developments within the liquified gas industry don't miss 'Clear signals for LNG robust, guided radar sensors ensure measurement accuracy in LNG production,' which offers insight from Claudia Homburg on behalf of Vega Controls.

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