Three pence per litre must be cut from fuel duty if road haulage firms in the UK are to compete with European counterparts, the Road Haulage Association, has warned in advance of the autumn statement due to take place on 3 December.
Richard Burnett, the new CEO of the RHA, said: “Road haulage is a key service industry to the UK economy and relies almost entirely on diesel, yet diesel duty remains by far the highest in the EU. If we are to gain a competitive edge over our European counterparts we have to see a 3ppl fuel duty cut.”
Along with the Freight Transport Association, the Road Haulage Association is one of the founding backers of the FairFuelUK campaign. The campaign aims to prevent further fuel duty rises, cut fuel duty, to bring UK fuel prices to European parity in terms of pricing and taxation, increase tax incentive for the adoption of greener fuels and technologies, it is also seeking an independent inquiry into the fuel pricing process and oil price speculation.
“FairFuelUK has done an excellent job in stopping the increase in fuel duty. However, the time has now come to see a fuel duty cut. Lower fuel duty is good for jobs and for growth – that was shown by the NIESR report that was commissioned by the RHA,” said Burnett.
The RHA reckons British operators pay £12,000 a year more duty per truck than the bulk of their competitors in mainland Europe.
“This damages the competitiveness of UK businesses and pushes up prices in the shops and for hauliers, it means increased pressure on cash-flow and makes it more difficult to fund investment,” said Burnett. “Lower duty rates are not just a vote winner but a winner for investment, growth and jobs.”