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Fleet News industry conference 2003: nerves calmed over future of LPG taxation

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FLEETS with liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) cars should not be nervous that Chancellor of the Exchequer Gordon Brown will hike duty in the forthcoming Budget, following a review of tax on the fuel, Transport Minister David Jamieson said.

However, he did add: 'What has happened with this is that the advantages of LPG in terms of emissions over petrol or diesel has closed and we felt that it was sensible to have a look at road fuel gases – LPG and natural gas – to see if the fiscal incentives to get people to use cleaner fuels were still the right ones.

'But we're also mindful of the huge investment people have made in vehicles and engines and the investment that companies have made in the filling stations. So we are now looking at the results of the consultation, and the Chancellor is making a balanced judgement on that before the end of the year.'

Jamieson did not envisage a massive shift in the duty rates on LPG, although he added it was up to the Chancellor. He said: 'What people said to us in the consultation and nearly everybody agreed, including the LPG industry, was that there had been this narrowing of the gap, but what they were afraid of was a cliff edge. What they said was if there were to be changes, that they should be gradual.'

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