Fleet News

Motor industry gives 'hands-off' Budget warning to Chancellor

THE motor industry is steeling itself for another Budget with a barrage of gunfire across the bows of Chancellor Gordon Brown. In a number of submissions and open letters, numerous lobbies have delivered unequivocal 'hands off' warnings ahead of Brown's statement on March 17.

The Retail Motor Industry Federation has registered its concern over the growing tide of anti-car sentiment, while the AA is warning that motorists will not swallow more tax increases without clear signs of improvement in the public transport system. The RMI attacked the proposed £25 vehicle registration fee as yet another tax on the motorist and said company car tax should be left alone.

In its submission, the RMI says the 1992/93 review of benefit in kind taxation resulted in a fair and transparent assessment of the benefit in kind value of company car provision. RMI chief executive Christopher Macgowan said: 'We would urge the Government to recognise the validity of the Inland Revenue research which acknowledges that company cars are adequately taxed. The industry now needs a period of legislative stability, not a re-working of the basis of the new arrangement.'

The AA wants road fund licence revenue and a fair proportion of tax raised from fuel duties to go to a new body which will oversee funding of roads and local transport. It says that would allow an extra £1 billion a year to be invested in the transport network.

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