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Budget 2015: RAC calling for fuel duty freezes

Date: 18 March 2015   |   Author: Daniel Puddicombe

Motoring organisation the RAC is urging the chancellor, George Osborne, to freeze fuel duty prices until September 2016.

It believes an automatic fuel duty increase would be detrimental to the economy. Currently, fuel duty is at 57.95p, and the RAC said the Government is collecting nearly 70% of the cost of a litre in tax, equating to a total of £26.4bn revenue from petrol and diesel in 2014.

If Osborne does not freeze the duty, a scheduled increase of 1p above inflation would take place, taking the price beyond 57.95p for the first time since 2011's Budget when he cut it by 1p a litre.

"If he decides to freeze it again it would be extremely unpopular for any future chancellor to unfreeze it as soon as they took office," said RAC chief engineer, David Bizley. "This means Osborne has a great opportunity to endear himself further to motorists with little negative consequence, potentially tying the hands of any new incumbent of No 11.

"We hope the chancellor is forward-looking enough to see the benefit of freezing duty beyond the end of this parliament so there is no scheduled increase in September, but ideally we would like to see him go a step further and freeze duty until the end of 2016."