We and our members have been calling for and lobbying for an essential user rebate on fuel ahead of the Chancellor's Spring Statement at the end of the month.
As part of a suite of measures to address the current costs crisis – alongside delaying the ban on red diesel and freezing fuel duty – the rebate is a critical tool to help the sector.
Budget: RHA urges Chancellor to support commercial vehicle sector
The rebate, which has been applied in other European countries to help with the fuel costs crisis, would help hauliers and coach operators by reducing the tax burden on fuel by approximately 15ppl.
Speaking on BBC Ulster, the RHA’s Policy Lead – Northern Ireland, John Martin, was asked about the impact of the current rising costs of fuel.
He said: “It will have a significant impact on the sector. But ultimately the sector has to pass on any fuel increases to their customers. Ultimately it’s the consumer that pays the price at the pumps.
“Some of the larger companies have fuel adjustments built into their contracts, but the smaller operators may not have that and will have to be footing the bill themselves before they pass on the cost to the customers.
“As an association we are asking the government to put a freeze on fuel duty for diesel for the next two years. There is a Budget coming up, so we are asking them to freeze duty and we are also asking them for an essential user rebate for lorry, coach and taxi operators.
“40% of what you pay for fuel is duty paid to the government. We are asking the government to return that to the users. And we are also asking for a 12 month delay in the change in the rules in relation to the use of red diesel.”
Relieve the burden
Helena Parker-Wright of W’s Transport was also asked the question about rising prices on BBC Norfolk and spoke about our call for an essential user rebate.
She said: “The RHA has lobbied for essential transport users to receive a rebate on fuel duty because we are 57.95ppl tax, so if the rebate happens that will alleviate some of the burden.”