has so far fought off £30bn in TAX hikes

The FairFuelUK Campaign fights for lower fuel prices at the pumps

and is backed by these prestigious organisations
Freight Transport AssociationFounding Backer
The Road Haulage AssociationFounding Backer
The Association of Pallet Networks
UKLPG - The trade association for the LPG industry in the UK
FairFuelUK, the Nationally Recognised Award Winning Campaign fighting for lower petrol & diesel prices, is widely accredited with stopping £30 billion of road user taxes being levied on businesses & public in this Parliament

Quentin WillsonQuentin Willson is one of Britain’s best-known motoring authorities and is lead campaigner for FairFuelUK. He spent over a decade presenting BBC's Top Gear alongside Jeremy Clarkson and was largely responsible for bringing the once scandalously high prices of new cars in the UK down to the same level as the rest of Europe.

3 MPG: The Heavy Transport Association is celebrating 30 years in Business. They have produced a brilliant publication of what their industry is all about. They have included on Page 128 a history of FairFuelUK. Take a look here
Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Dear Member of Parliament,

With just 6 weeks to the Chancellor’s Autumn Statement, it is a privilege as lead campaigner for FairFuelUK with its founder Howard Cox, to put before you reasons why we’d like your support for a 3p cut in Fuel Duty. 
In our ‘2015 Manifesto for Growth’ we set out the evidence, business and public sentiment of the campaign since its launch in January 2011. We know that you are bombarded for reasons to cut different taxes but please take a moment to empathise that the 60%+ taken every time 32m licensed road users fill up with an essential need, is one of biggest influencers on the country’s economic growth prospects, their mobility and residual income. 

It is no coincidence following our active lobbying and campaigning, that the decisions made by the Coalition Treasury in cutting this punitive levy by 1p in March 2011 and freezing it for the lifetime of this Parliament has inspired the UK Economy coming out of recession. The previously planned duty rises would have meant that prices at the pumps would have been in excess of £1.60 per litre and we would not be looking at a blossoming economy, where unemployment is falling, GDP growing and inflation dropping. So the evidence is there for you to be reassured that a small cut of 3p will definitely pay the Exchequer back by its consequential impact on other "growth” generated levies, such and more Corporation Tax, VAT, Income Tax, NI and even further escalation in GDP.

The price we pay at the pumps impacts on every aspect of the supply chain, prices in the shops and community cohesion. Its bearing on businesses is immense and for the haulage industry in particular, logistics is the lifeblood of the economy delivering the goods and services needed by individuals and businesses across the UK and beyond. Fuel represents the biggest single cost for most logistics businesses and as they concentrate efforts on securing the recovery, controlling costs is an absolute must. By cutting fuel duty, Government would give businesses the ability and confidence needed to invest for the future bringing benefits to industry, consumers and the wider economy.

We have had fabulous support from ALL Parties, notably from MPs Robert Halfon, Jason McCartney, Martin Vickers, Steve Baker, Tessa Munt, Rob Flello amongst many others too numerous to list here. We are most grateful for this Cross-Party support. However the Government continues to take over 60% in tax when we fill up at the pumps, we have the highest fuel duty levels in the EU and the cost of fuel directly impacts adversely on the cost of living, investment, jobs and running businesses. The Government’s welcome freeze in duty has now to be turned into a cut.

  • £42bn+ per year in tax is taken from 32m UK Road Users. Only 18.6% of this Road User Tax goes back into Roads Infrastructure. This represents approx. £30,000 per mile on roads. And here is food for thought, HS2 will cost up to £320m per mile to get to Birmingham just 20 minutes quicker. Imagine how £50-80bn of this predicted capital investment could benefit instead, better public transport and roads for the whole country. 

  • 26.8% of the £42bn in Road User Tax goes into spending on public transport and the railways (This kills the myth that the motorist and haulier do not support or care about public transport. This hard working group of motorists and commercial drivers has been misguided as to where their tax is actually spent. 

  • Also in the latest independent ComRes research it is clear that by supporting FairFuelUK's continuing call for a 3p fuel duty cut (7 out of 10 saying it will benefit the economy with 52% of the carless households agreeing with this statement too), all politicians from all Parties will considerably improve their chances of gaining more votes at the General Election. This is an Election issue that will not go away.
Please support our call for cutting Fuel Duty for Growth. You can guarantee this will work. 
Quentin Willson and Howard Cox

Link to the FairFuelUK 2015 Manifesto for Growth: www.fairfueluk.com/manifesto/FairFuelUK_manifesto.html                                   

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Monday, October 20, 2014

Sourced from the Financial Times


"As oil prices have tumbled, one question has reverberated around the market: what is Saudi Arabia up to?

Little restraint has been shown by some energy market watchers in their commentary on the recent sell-off and the role played by Opec’s biggest producer. The 25 per cent fall in the price of Brent crude since mid-June, to almost four-year lows, they say, is the result of a deliberate strategy by the Gulf nation to test the mettle of rival producers from Russia, to fellow Opec member Iran and US shale producers.

By refusing to lower production significantly and by cutting export prices, Saudi Arabia has started a price war that it expects to win because of its cheaper cost of production and huge foreign exchange reserves.But cooler heads say Saudi Arabia’s recent actions are more nuanced and a reflection of market realities.

Prices have extended their rout into a fourth month, as high levels of production from North American shale formations has coincided with sustained output from Libya and Iraq, despite the bloodshed that has ravaged both countries. At the same time demand has slowed amid sluggish economic growth in Europe and Asia, creating a surplus.


With the current market scenario having crept up on Saudi Arabia, it has had two options: accept a period of lower prices in order to retain market share. Or, cut production and sacrifice market share in defence of higher oil prices. It seems to have taken the former.

"For the Saudis, cutting production significantly right now is suicidal. They are not going to fight such market movements,” says Nat Kern, president of Foreign Reports, a Washington-based consulting firm. "They could cut to stabilise the price at $100, but demand is weak, so they could then be in a position where they would have to cut again and again.”

Higher prices would only encourage more drilling from US shale groups and other high-cost producers. All the while, they would only continue to lose market share.

Remarks by Saudi officials to analysts in New York and London suggest the kingdom can withstand an extended period of lower prices and may be comfortable at $70 a barrel. This, they hope, will induce demand, curtail some supply and balance the market.

Already the price of Brent crude has bounced back a little to about $86 a barrel, from a low of roughy $83 last week. Traders are holding out for greater Chinese demand to support the price further.

"With prices hovering in the $80 to $90 range, they don’t feel the need to act,” adds Mr Kern. "But if the price fell a lot lower, to let’s say $60, then they would look to take action. But they don’t think they’ll drop that low.”


Sourced from the Financial Times at http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/9ab77884-57cd-11e4-8493-00144feab7de.html#axzz3GarKwRwX

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Tuesday, October 14, 2014

After running Fringe Events at all three major Party Conferences, it’s clear that Politicians are completely out of touch with Road User needs. They were hugely disrespectful by not embracing a debate of cutting fuel duty for growth. They simply did not turn up, probably because it was at 8am in the morning after a night of partying. Only Tessa Munt of the Lib Dems and Tory Andrew Bingham took part. Both are hugely supportive. Frankly many MPs (Not all of them though such as Philip Davies, Jason McCartney, Steve Baker, Tessa Munt, Rob Flello, Martin Vickers, Robert Halfon and a few others) are ignorant of what is staring them in the face, namely that cutting duty will secure them votes and also will be good for the economy.
It’s a win-win situation that Parties as a whole are scared to embrace. UKIP is the only party calling for a duty cut for growth in their Manifesto, following our lobbying. The London Centric closeted politicians together with the London Centric National Media are clueless in understanding this massive silent majority who predominantly have no choice but to use 4 wheels for their everyday working lives.
I was even told by one politician who will remain nameless: "You've had a penny cut and this tax is now frozen, what more do you want?" It beggars belief the arrogance of the man...and disregard for 32m licensed drivers and 70% of the electorate.
And haulage business, the lifeblood of a successful economy are strangled by the high cost of fuel. The level of fuel prices prevents investment in training, employing more staff and buying new cleaner emission vehicles. Wake up MPs and put the UK at the heart of global growth by supporting lower prices at the pumps. You know it makes sense, so listen to your constituents who will vote for the MP that understands the reality of high petrol and diesel prices.

In May 2014 FairFuelUK’s efforts were vindicated when The Treasury publically agreed that lower Fuel Duty does indeed help the wider economy and admitted that the 1p cut in 2011 and subsequent suspension of 14p of escalators in the lifetime of this Parliament will actually have improved UK GDP by 0.5%. This is The Treasury’s own figure and entirely due to not introducing those planned Fuel Duty rises. This admission has marked an historic step change in fuel taxation theory and highlighted the damaging economic effect of high transport costs on GDP and growth. With the reverse Fuel Duty model, now proven beyond any doubt, FairFuelUK thinks we need to look at Fuel Duty taxation in a completely different way. This change in attitude would not have taken place if it were not for the RHA's funding of the FairFuelUK NIESR report in 2013 and the FTA's Funding of the CEBR report in the same year. Both reports clearly showed that cutting fuel duty is good for growth


Our backing from 150 cross-party MPs, supporters like the FTA, RHA, RAC, APN, UKLPG and Aldermore Bank, not to mention our fabulous 750,000 members of the public who signed our petition, all know that it wasn’t the government who suddenly created this historic change in fuel taxation thinking - it was because of FairFuelUK and its founding backers the FTA and RHA. Years of our well-mannered, reasoned, intelligent, evidence based lobbying - often face-to-face with ministers - achieved the Big Change.


So as well as the Treasury stopping trying to marginalise 32 million licence holders by calling them Motorists, they should start thinking about them as Driving Consumers, and hopefully then they’ll realise this one very critical point. If those Driving Consumers - 70% of registered voters don’t forget - can’t afford to put fuel in their tanks (because more than 60% of that cost goes to the government in taxation), then consumer disposable income reduces drastically, GDP falls, inflation and unemployment rises and growth across most economic sectors slows down.


High transport costs significantly reduce economic activity – it’s as simple as that. The Freight industry has been telling the government this immutable truth for years – the problem was they didn't want to listen.


We launch our FairFuelUK Manifesto (see photo above) this week in Parliament on October 22nd. Please watch this space.


Howard Cox - Founder of FairFuelUK

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Saturday, September 27, 2014

We are holding a similar Fringe Event in Birmingham at the Conservative Party Conference on Monday 29th September, as we did at the previous week's Labour political bash. We were treated with scant disregard at that one. Read that review at http://www.fairfueluk.com/quentins_blog.php?entry_id=1411477199  Hopefully the Tory faithful will listen to our question "Are 32m UK Road Users (Voters) getting a fair deal from successive Governments?" And we will be giving out our open letter (see below) calling for support of the campaign's core objectives. Watch this space for the review next week..


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Tuesday, September 23, 2014

FairFuelUK Campaigners are attending all three Major Party Political Conferences in 2014. We will write a review of each conference experience and will be honest, apolitical and fair about the way the Campaign is considered at each of the three Party events. Here is the first of those reviews.

From left to right in the photo, James Hookham (FTA), Jack Semple (RHA), Quentin Willson (FairFuelUK), David Bizley (RAC) and Rob Shuttleworth (UKLPG)The Labour Party Conference Experience


FairFuelUK attended the Labour Party Conference in Manchester and held a Fringe Event in the Midland Hotel, where the great and the good of current Labour Party Politics were staying right next to their conference and exhibition centre.


From left to right in the photo, James Hookham (FTA), Jack Semple (RHA), Quentin Willson (FairFuelUK), David Bizley (RAC) and Rob Shuttleworth (UKLPG) gave a day of their time to hopefully debate with Labour Party Delegates at their Conference, issues that affect the economy and 32m UK Road Users. 


To hold this event FairFuelUK had to pay the Labour Party, through the Campaign's backers the FTA, in excess of £2,600 to hold a 60 minute meeting that also did not include £125 for each of FairFuelUK’s 5 panellists' security passes. And of course there were hotel accommodation costs to pay for with the inevitable inflated room rates to coincide with the Conference itself. SO the total cost of attending for FairFuelUK was about £4,000.  Please note that all three Parties charge to run Fringe Events.

Labour Conference Programme - 152 Pages of AdvertisingIn the lead up to the Conference, FairFuelUK also paid for advertisements in selected media to entice Labour delegates to attend their Fringe Event. On top of that, a personal invitation was sent to each Labour MP to come and debate "Are 32m UK Road Users getting a fair deal from successive Governments?” This was the title of the event that was also in the Conference Programme (pictured) on page 70 for the 10,000 delegates to be in absolute no doubt of the content of FairFuelUK’s event. Labour's Twitter account was also contacted with several polite invitations to attend.


Each MP was informed very courteously that FairFuelUK was holding this event on behalf of its 750,000 supporters and sponsoring backers, "to simply find out where the Labour Party is currently positioned regarding its support of the UK road user. And, following this Fringe Meeting the Campaign will therefore be better placed to include in its Manifesto an up to date understanding of the Party's future approach to voting motorists, hauliers and other road users. In a recent Poll of 30,000+ motorists, 87.7% said they would vote or maybe vote for that politician that truly understands road user issues. This will be a key General Election Issue in 2015.”

The meeting was voluntarily chaired by Quentin Willson, who supports FairFuelUK Campaign without any recompense. FairFuelUK through the fabulous hosting of the FTA (a founding backer of the campaign) supplied breakfast to all attendees as well. The event itself was held at 8.00am on Monday Morning. At the same time as the FairFuelUK event there were 20 other meetings for Labour Delegates to choose from, including "Data, Democracy and Power” and those sponsored by the Childcare Voucher Providers Association, the British Chambers of Commerce, Society of Labour Lawyers, Electoral Reform Society and the Policy Network, to name but a few.

Only 16 Labour Conference Delegates turned out to attend FairFuelUK’s event. NOT ONE MP!


There was however one Prospective Labour Candidate for Altrincham and Sale West, James Wright who did attend. He was perplexed and somewhat embarrassed as to why his Party Members were not there to debate the issue. He said: "this is a no brainer, pump prices must come down to help the economy, and the Labour Party should be right behind the campaign”.


On the previous day (Sunday) of the Conference Howard Cox, the original founder of the FairFuelUK Campaign also attended FTA’s "Big Transport Interview” session with Mary Creagh MP, Shadow Transport Secretary. He asked her this question: "Following the Treasury’s support of FairFuelUK’s evidence that cutting fuel duty is now proven to be good for the economy, will the Labour Party support a 3p cut in Fuel Duty?” She replied: "I can’t answer this question because it is way above my pay grade.” She was however exceedingly vocal at this meeting about trams and cycling.

An open letter to the Labour Party from the FairFuelUK Campaign

At a private dinner later in the evening hosted by the FTA and attended by 3 MPs from the Labour Party, Howard Cox again asked that question to these politicians including significant background information as to why they should indeed back this core campaign objective and listen to supporters of FairFuelUK. All 3 MPs avoided answering Howard's question and clearly showed no understanding of the issues that face 32 million road users of the United Kingdom.

The conclusion from this experience at the Labour Party Conference is absolutely clear: The Labour Party does NOT seem to want to support the 32 million road users in the UK.  What other conclusion can we come to? They do not seem to want to support cutting Fuel Duty and are not willing to answer the questions posed in this open letter to the Party that was distributed at their Conference (pictured left). Remember carefully, if they were now in power pump prices would be in excess of £1.60p per litre.


In the 4 years of campaigning, we have tried to get in front of Ed Balls and Ed Miliband to discuss FairFuelUK objectives and what the Labour Party’s policies are for the 32 million road users who pay 42bn in tax each year to the Exchequer. Despite repeated invitations even via supporting Campaign Labour MPs, such as Stoke's Robert Flello, they have not had the decency to see us or even reply to messages we have sent to them.


The FairFuelUK Campaign will continue to lobby Labour MPs to try and convince the Party elite to reconsider their position of using lower Fuel Duty instead as a growth stimulus and not their traditional cash cow of canning motorists. Many MPs in the Party have indeed supported FairFuelUK in the past, so we are optimistic of a change in direction.. Let's hope so...


The Next Conference is the Tory Party's in Birmingham. See our next blog on that one. We will report fully and honestly....


In the meantime please purchase a Campaign Sticker, so we can for example afford to attend these conferences and continue campaigning for better and fairer pump prices on your behalf. Thanks for your continued support, FairFuelUK

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It is managed by Howard Cox and Quentin Willson. email: campaign@fairfueluk.com    
Contact and Media: Howard Cox 07515 421611
FairFuelUK, 1 Rammell Mews,Cranbrook,Kent TN17 3BQ. UK