Treasury defends fuel prices

The Treasury was forced to defend itself today when dozens of lobbyists gathered at the Houses of Parliament to demand the Chancellor cuts fuel duty in the Budget later this […]

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By Vicky Ellis

The Treasury was forced to defend itself today when dozens of lobbyists gathered at the Houses of Parliament to demand the Chancellor cuts fuel duty in the Budget later this month.

Campaign group Fair Fuel UK wants George Osborne to cut fuel duty by 2.5p and claims this would create 180,000 jobs within five years.

But the Treasury claimed petrol is already far cheaper thanks to its fuel duty freeze last year.

A spokesperson said: “The Government has already taken real action to help households with the cost of the motoring, delivering support worth more than £4 billion. At the Autumn Statement we froze fuel duty until August and scrapped another planned rise altogether. This came after our decision to cut fuel duty at Budget 2011, abolish the fuel duty escalator and replace it with a fair fuel stabiliser.”

They said the Coalition’s Budget had been better for drivers than its predecessors’ plans.

“Petrol and diesel will be an average of 10p per litre cheaper than if we had proceeded with the escalator previously announced in 2009.”

The Treasury added reducing the deficit will always take “priority” in decisions about the public purse.