Fleet News

BP on the fence as chief executive backs fuel campaign

BP Amoco is distancing itself from the conflict surrounding UK fuel prices, after its chief executive Sir John Browne gave his support to Dump the Pump campaigners. Browne went on record saying that he shared the concerns of campaign protestors, adding that BP made 'less than a penny' per litre of petrol sold, while Chancellor of the Exchequer Gordon Brown was pocketing taxes in excess of 61p per litre.

But a company spokeswoman said: 'BP is completely neutral about the Dump the Pump campaign. No-one likes high petrol prices and people know that three-quarters of the price of petrol is Government tax.'

Browne's attack came as BP announced a huge rise in profits in the half-year to June, including a 164% surge in the second quarter, which took the pre-tax total to £5.6 billion, equating to £30 million a day.

BP reported a 5% drop in sales on the first day of the campaign but over the week the deficit had been made up. There were no significant drops in sales recorded by the oil giant during last Monday's boycott.

Tony Leigh, chairman of the Association of Car Fleet Operators said ACFO supported the campaign but doubted it would have any effect. Leigh wrote: 'I can't see Gordon brown suddenly seeing the light and reducing the tax on fuel. But it will highlight the ever-increasing clamour about a rip-off Britain.'

Running alongside the Dump the Pump campaign, the Association of British Drivers has started its own campaign - 'Show the Tax' - which asks petrol stations to display a tax table showing exactly how much fuel duty motorists are paying.

The ABD claims that a motorist who travels 15,000 miles in a car with a fuel consumption of 35mpg, pays an average £1,200 in fuel duty and that for every £50 spent at the pumps, just £14 is petrol.

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