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Fuel duty freeze has made 'little impact' on drivers

The fuel duty freeze of the last three years has made "little impact" on the wallets of cash strapped motorists, the RAC has said.

RAC Foundation director Professor Stephen Glaister called on the Chancellor to "go beyond his promise" to freeze fuel duty and "cut the rate further" in the 2014 budget, scheduled for March 19.

We're only about two weeks away from the Budget and the Chancellor has made much of the fact that fuel duty has not risen for three years.

However this has made little impact on the huge proportion of tax the UK's 36 million drivers pay on their fuel.

The irony is that if you take tax out of the equation we actually have the fifth cheapest diesel in the EU and the second cheapest petrol.

The oil companies and retailers are often blamed for soaring pump prices but these figures reveal that's not the whole picture.

– Professor Stephen Glaister

Read: UK drivers face 'highest rate of tax on diesel' in Europe

UK drivers face 'highest rate of tax on diesel' in Europe

British drivers who use diesel to fuel their vehicles face the highest rate of tax in Europe, the RAC Foundation has found.

Read: Shell's shares fall 4% after profits warning

Petrol prices
The RAC released the figures ahead of this year's budget, due on March 19. Credit: PA

Read: Fuel duty rise for next year cancelled, Osborne says

The only country more costly than the UK for motorists filling up their cars with petrol is Sweden, the charity said.

Its figures showed that tax accounts for 59% of the price of diesel in the UK, with Sweden (56%) second and Italy (55%) third.

As much as 61% of the price of petrol in the UK is down to tax, with Swedes (62%) paying the most in tax and the Netherlands (61%) paying the same.

In contrast, of 28 European countries surveyed, Luxembourg's drivers fork out the least amount in tax which accounts for only 41% of the total price.

Read: Motor fuels and tuition fees help curb inflation

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Osborne: Fuel duty rise shows Govt on side of families

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September's 2p fuel duty cancelled. Osborne definitely on side of motorists although he cites "hard working families"

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Cancelling these rises over the past few years has cost £22 billion, he says.

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Govt defeats Labour motion to postpone 3p fuel duty rise

by - Deputy Political Editor

The Government has defeated a Labour motion to postpone the 3p fuel duty rise in January by 234 votes to 282 - a majority of 48.

But it means Labour can now go on the airwaves saying the Tories and Lib Dems voted against freezing petrol prices in 2013 (until the mini-budget on December 5)

ITV News Index: 82% oppose fuel duty rise

82% of people surveyed for the ITV News Index by ComRes say they oppose a rise in fuel duty.

73% of those asked said they would be angry if a fuel duty rise goes ahead.

Four in five of those surveyed think a fuel duty rise will make the Government look out of touch and two-thirds believe a rise will make a material difference to their household’s income.

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