Autumn Statement 2014: Verdict from the industry
03 December 2014
"I'm pleased that George Osborne has steered clear of any further taxation on company cars. We've seen benefit in kind taxation rates set to increase by two per cent in each of the next four years, and any additional increases would seriously damage the businesses driving the wider economic recovery. It is also positive that the Chancellor upheld the ongoing freeze on fuel duty.
"While the recent re-announcement of £15bn of additional investment in 100 schemes across UK roads was made before the Autumn Statement, it is clear that the Government acknowledges roads are essential arteries for Britain's businesses. Action to improve these vital pieces of infrastructure must continue as an urgent priority".
Matthew Dyer, Managing Director, LeasePlan UK
"The negative impact of fuel duty on economic growth is now acknowledged by the Treasury. With fuel duty already frozen until May 2015, we had feared an early return to the fuel duty escalator system - a deeply unpopular practice which led to a series of fuel duty hikes - but, for now, it appears that is not going to be the case.
"While we are currently enjoying low pump prices as a result of the lower world oil price this may change quickly, and it will be reassuring to fleet managers that the taxation scheme is not about to change."
David Bizley, chief engineer at the RAC
"We at the IAM greatly welcome this move, at last it will give motorway users the chance to compare prices and not feel 'held to ransom' at hefty premium prices charged on these routes.
"Using a motorway should not be seen as a penalty, and service station operators need to think long and hard about the charges they make. They should not see motorway users as a 'cash cow.'
"We also see fairer prices on motorway fuel as just the start - there is no justification for such eye-watering prices for food, refreshments or other such essentials."
Neil Greig, IAM Director of Policy and Research
"Today's Autumn Statement focused on the future; maintaining economic recovery, in turn reducing the deficit and addressing the balance of power between the North and South of the country. Hitachi Capital Vehicle Solutions is pleased to hear an Autumn Statement that shows support for SMEs and to the infrastructure required for the country to prosper for generations to come.
"The investment into Britain's transport infrastructure will be welcomed by the UK today and in years to come. If the Government is to succeed in building a 'Northern powerhouse' and balancing power, they rightly need to invest in a network that supports this and continued growth. Road and rail are fundamental elements for the mobilisation of business and form key parts of the attraction for investment in the UK from overseas.
"The freeze in fuel duty offers needed reassurance to the public and companies alike. The recent fall in oil prices has brought the fuel escalator and stabiliser models back into focus. Although abolishment was at one point expected this morning, freezing fuel duty is good news for the economy and in conjunction with the infrastructure investment enables workforce mobilisation and supports reduced unemployment. Decisions that prove the Government is looking over the long term."
Simon Oliphant, Chief Executive of Hitachi Capital Vehicle Solutions
"Overall, this was a forward-looking package of measures as far as future business mobility strategies are concerned. The statement showed that the Government appreciates the need for broad-based investment in travel and transport infrastructure.
"Electric vehicle R&D and manufacturing should get a boost from the Northern Powerhouse initiative. And the £100 million-plus of funding outlined for ultra-low emission vehicles, new vehicle technologies and charging infrastructure signals the Government's determination to lay the foundation for sustainable travel in the long term. It is also good to see autonomous vehicles included in the Chancellor's thinking as perfecting the technology will take provision of on-demand business mobility to an exciting new level."
Richard Schooling, CEO, Alphabet.