The study, produced by business information company Datamonitor, suggests that even in markets where the use of fuel cards is common there is still potential for growth.
Datamonitor forecourts analyst Pandita Louram said: ‘While cash is less popular in Scandinavia and markets such as Germany, this form of payment is resilient in Southern Europe with one quarter of all commercial fuel volumes paid for in cash.
‘For fuel card providers these figures are encouraging because the benefits of a fuel card far outweigh those of paper payments.
‘Fuel card providers should target those remaining traditionalists in the commercial sector by emphasising that the fuel card is an easy-to-use, VAT-approved management tool that will ensure they are able to manage and control fuel spend in a more professional and cost-effective way.’ The report suggests fuel card providers could team up with credit card companies, which offer ‘versatility, competitive rates and value-added services’.
Louram added: ‘With well-established brands and competitive rates, credit card providers are in a position to offer the same as fuel card providers and much more.
‘In markets where the credit card industry is flourishing, fuel card providers are wise to investigate the possibility of forging alliances with those in the financial sector or else be at the mercy of motorists who place a high premium on convenience and competitive prices.’
The report comes as the UK Government is considering its response to a court decision that it must comply with the European Union Sixth Directive, which blocks companies reclaiming VAT on fuel payments reimbursed to staff if the fuel is not bought by a VAT-registered company.
In conjunction with fleet and fuel management company Arval, Fleet News has launched the FuelWise campaign, designed to help fleet decision-makers deal with the impending change.
See www.fleetnewsnet.co.uk for FuelWise details