The price of diesel has hit a record high having rocketed by 10pence per litre (ppl) in just 12 months – an inflation-busting 7% rise – reports RMI Petrol.
The increase leaves diesel at 143.05 pence per litre (ppl), a level that could derail Government plans to curb inflation, is a disaster for motorists, and puts the livelihoods of hundreds of fuel retailers at further risk, says RMI Petrol chairman Brian Madderson.
There is more grim news ahead as a ‘perfect storm’ of global factors. including rising crude oil prices, closing refineries and pressure on supply, mean that by Easter we could well see diesel and petrol prices go even higher, says RMI Petrol.
Inflation for diesel is now almost double that of the Consumer Price Index (CPI) of 3.6%.
Madderson says the coming March Budget is the ideal opportunity for Chancellor George Osborne to cut the rate of duty on fuel, as he did last year.
He is also calling on the Government to ease the pressure on motorists and the economy by ditching plans to raise fuel duty by 3.02ppl from August 1, 2012. Such a rise would result in a 4ppl price hike once VAT at 20% is included.
Madderson said: “It’s all very well for the Government and the Bank of England to declare that CPI is heading down, but try telling that to our cash-strapped retailers and to the millions of motorists, truckers and van drivers now paying an average 143.05ppl for their diesel. We are seeing run-away inflation for diesel and petrol is little better.”
RMI Petrol is so concerned that after months of intensive evidence-gathering it has today made a formal submission to the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) recommending that it conduct an urgent new study into the UK fuels market.
Madderson added: “This record price for diesel, plus the rising costs of petrol, means household budgets, big business and small and medium sized operators are all being squeezed by these high fuel prices.”