Fuel duty rise on hold until May 2015

Fuel duty is a tax which applies to the price of fuel for the majority of road vehicles in Britain. It therefore affects millions of both new car and used car owners nationwide.

The original proposal to increase fuel duty had been under consideration by the Government for a couple of years and it could have cost Britain’s drivers more money at the pumps.

In recent budget statements, however, the proposed fuel duty rise has been repeatedly delayed by the Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne.

In a speech to the Conservative Party conference earlier this year Osborne indicated that the fuel duty rise could be scrapped, but only if the Government could afford it.

Now in the Chancellor’s Autumn 2013 Statement it has been revealed that fuel duty has been put on hold again, until May 2015 at the earliest.

This decision means that the fee added to each litre of fuel will remain at 57.95p. This figure has been unchanged since January 2011. In that month fuel duty went up by 0.76p per litre, but in March the same year fuel duty was cut by 1p per litre.

Osborne has explained that by freezing fuel duty up until 2015, average pump prices will be 20p per litre lower compared to if fuel duty had been raised when originally planned.

He further added that by about 2015-2016, the average UK motorist will have saved £11 each time they refill the fuel tank in their car.

In reaction to the Chancellor’s Autumn Statement the British motoring association, the AA, published an official response. They commented: "Cancelling fuel duty next year tells drivers that the Government is trying to help offset some of the impact of highly volatile pump prices over the past two years."

The AA added: "At the pump, a 2p-a-litre increase would have been equivalent to a £1 a tank increase for small cars and £1.40 for Mondeo family."

Also in this year’s Autumn Statement, Osborne confirmed a freeze in the statuary maximum price of the MOT test for a car. The price will remain at £54.85 for the test until 2015.

In other motoring news the Chancellor also revealed that from 2014 an independent medical panel will be introduced to scrutinise whiplash claims to prevent fraudulent claims from increasing insurance premiums.