Fuel duty on track to rise at next Budget as Jeremy Hunt warns ‘we can’t afford to make change permanent’
FUEL duty is on track to RISE at the next Budget, Jeremy Hunt admitted today.
The Chancellor told MPs that as things stand, the Treasury doesn’t have the headroom to keep petrol costs down for a fourteenth year.
In a major blow to hard-up drivers, he confessed: “We cannot afford to make that change permanent.”
Mr Hunt was hailed by motorists and MPs across the Commons when he announced fuel duty would stay frozen for another year at this month’s Spring Budget.
With a better-than-expected financial forecast, drivers were given a £5billion reprieve by the Treasury — saving £100 a year at the pump.
The Chancellor personally thanked Sun readers for helping holt a potential 12p leap in duty.
But at a hearing of the Treasury Committee today, he revealed that leap is on course to happen next March.
“We’ll make a decision at the next budget and it will be decided on the basis of the room we have in our fiscal forecast,” Mr Hunt said.
“At the moment, we do not have the headroom to do that. So that’s why we are not planning to do it.
“But of course, we will look at what the numbers say close to the next Budget and keep that decision under review.”
Mr Hunt’s admission comes as inflation sits at an eye watering 10.4 per cent.
The Chancellor said his reason for freezing fuel duty was the crippling impact soaring costs have had on hard-up households.
Rishi Sunak has vowed to halve inflation by the end of the year.
Today Mr Hunt said the PM’s mission is on track and prices should even be back to the target rate of 2.9 per in 2024.
“I’m confident in the forecasts,” he said.
“But I think there can be no complacency at all in bringing down inflation.”