Fuel tax cut for British drivers is one of the lowest in Europe - RAC

Fuel tax cut for British drivers is one of the lowest in Europe – RAC

The UK is at the bottom of the rankings of European countries due to actions taken to alleviate the burden of high fuel prices.

Only Luxembourg has done less than the UK government out of 13 European countries that have reduced taxes on gasoline since the start of the price increase in March, according to the RAC.

The 5p cut per litre, introduced by the UK in March, is overshadowed by fuel tax cuts enjoyed by drivers in countries such as Germany (25.1p/litre), Italy (21.2p/litre), Portugal (16. 2 pence per litre), the Netherlands. (14.7 pence per litre) and Ireland (14.5 pence per litre).

The governments of France and Spain have introduced discounts at the box office at petrol stations of around 15p per liter and 17p per liter, respectively.

Some fuel retailers, including TotalEnergies in France and BP in Spain, have cut prices to around 33p a litre.

Of the 15 European Union states that have not taken steps to cut pump prices since March, all but six already charge a lower fuel duty than the UK.

UK gasoline prices have finally begun to fall in recent days after pressure on retailers to reflect the drop in wholesale prices that began seven weeks ago.

But in the UK, the average price of gasoline is still higher at 186p per liter than in all EU countries except Finland (190p) and Denmark (also 186p).

Drivers in France pay about 23 pence less per liter than in the UK.



Repeated calls to the UK government for more support go unheeded

Simon Williams, RAC

The picture is similar for diesel: only Croatia introduces a smaller fuel tax cut than the UK, and only one member of the European Union, Sweden, has a higher average price.

RAC fuel spokesman Simon Williams said: “This analysis reveals an uncomfortable truth for the UK government: Compared to other European countries, it is doing the least to support drivers during this period of record high fuel prices.

“As a result, the UK has become one of the most expensive places to refuel and has ranked it above other countries that have historically charged more for fuel than UK retailers, including France and the Netherlands.

“The cost of living crisis shows no signs of ending any time soon and it is disappointing that repeated calls for more support from the UK government are falling on deaf ears.

“Pump prices in the UK may be finally starting to fall, but so far the decline has been too small and too late given the massive drop in wholesale prices that retailers have been benefiting from for almost two months.

“Drivers, many of whom are heavily dependent on their vehicles, need more help, and they need it now.”

Fuel prices had been rising even before Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February, but the aftermath of the war has exacerbated the situation.

The reduction in the use of Russian oil led to an increase in demand from other producers, which led to higher prices.

Protests were held in the UK, when columns of cars slowly moved along motorways.

Here is the ranking of countries in the European Union and the UK, based on the reduction in the gasoline tax per liter from March, according to the RAC:

1. Germany Gasoline tax cut: 25.1 pence per litre. Average filling price: 154 pence per litre.

2. Italy Tax cut on gasoline: 21.2 pence per litre. Average filling price: 164 pence per litre.

3. Portugal. Gasoline tax cut: 16.2 pence per litre. Average filling price: 161 pence per litre.

4. The Netherlands. Gasoline tax cut: 14.7 pence per litre. Average filling price: 182 pence per litre.

5. Ireland. Gasoline tax cut: 14.5 pence per litre. Average filling price: 171 pence per litre.

6. Sweden Gasoline tax cut: 13.0 pence per litre. Average filling price: 168 pence per litre.

7. Belgium Gasoline tax cut: 12.3 pence per litre. Average filling price: 159 pence per litre.

8. Croatia. Gasoline tax reduction: 9.0 pence per litre. Average filling price: 151 pence per litre.

9. Cyprus. Gasoline tax cut: 5.9 pence per litre. Average filling price: 152 pence per litre.

10. Hungary. Gasoline tax cut: 5.3 pence per litre. Average filling price: 106 pence per litre.

11. Czech Republic Gasoline tax reduction: 5.2 pence per liter Average filling price: 160 pence per liter

12. UK. Gasoline tax cut: 5p per litre. Average filling price: 186 pence per litre.

13. Luxembourg. Gasoline tax reduction: 4.5 pence per litre. Average filling price: 145 pence per litre.

The following members of the European Union have not reduced their gasoline taxes since March (ranked in order of their highest average filling price):

FinlandAverage pump price: 190 pence per liter

Denmark Average pump price: 186 pence per litre.

GreeceAverage pump price: 185 pence per litre.

AustriaAverage pump price: 169 pence per liter

SpainAverage pump price: 166 pence per liter

FranceAverage pump price: 163 pence per liter

LatviaAverage pump price: 161 pence per liter

LithuaniaAverage pump price: 158 pence per liter

Slovakia Average pump price: 155 pence per liter

EstoniaAverage pump price: 149 pence per liter

Romania Average pump price: 147 pence per liter

SloveniaAverage pump price: 145 pence per liter

BulgariaAverage pump price: 144 pence per liter

PolandAverage pump price: 131 pence per liter

MaltaAverage pump price: 114 pence per liter

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