'Discount fuel' for remote drivers


Motorists in remote areas may be given a discount on the cost of fuel

Motorists in remote areas may be given a discount on the cost of fuel under plans being considered by the Government, Treasury Chief Secretary Danny Alexander says..

There is increasing pressure for the Government to take action to reduce the burden on motorists faced with increasing prices at the pump, with ministers considering introducing a “fair fuel stabiliser”.

Mr Alexander said the Government was also taking steps to introduce a “discount scheme” for drivers in remote communities who depend heavily on their cars but are faced with higher fuel costs.

David Cameron has indicated that a fuel duty stabiliser was being examined, although Mr Alexander acknowledged there were difficulties with the plan.

The concept of the fuel stabiliser is to peg fuel duty to the price of oil so that when the price of oil goes up the proportion of tax goes down, and vice versa, maintaining a steady price for consumers.

The Chief Secretary told BBC1’s Politics Show: “We as a Government are looking at the idea of the fair fuel stabiliser, as the Prime Minister has been saying.

“It’s a complicated idea and it’s difficult to see precisely how we achieve it but it’s something that we are looking at very carefully to see if we can reduce the burden of fuel duty.

“We are already also taking steps, and we are the first Government that’s done this, to put in place a fuel duty discount scheme for remote communities where the prices are absolutely highest, something previous governments refused to do.”

In the coalition agreement the Government committed to “investigate measures to help with fuel costs in remote rural areas, starting with pilot schemes”. The measure was also contained in the Liberal Democrat manifesto at the general election.

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