The RAC has written to all the major UK political party leaders urging them to remember the key issues that matter most to business and private road users when drafting their party manifestos ahead of the general election on June 8.
The RAC’s Motoring Manifesto details the six top issues which motorists have identified as among their biggest concerns covering roads policy, motoring taxation and driving in the UK.
The majority are already being addressed to some extent by the outgoing Government but the RAC is concerned that they could be diluted or parked for good in the rush to draw up party election manifestos.
The RAC’s six-point plan calls for:
- A promise not to raise fuel duty or Insurance Premium Tax for the duration of the next Parliament
- An air quality plan that is both fair to motorists and delivers much-needed improvement to those areas with the poorest air quality
- Continued investment in England’s strategic road network – motorways and major A-roads – beyond2020, funded by Vehicle Excise Duty
- Publication of a long-term investment plan and ring-fenced funding to bring our local roads up to a state that is fit for purpose
- Action to reduce spurious whiplash claims and a reform of the personal injury Discount Rates to bring the rising cost of insurance premiums back under control
- A commitment to introduce better regulation of the largely unregulated private parking sector
RAC chief executive officer Dave Hobday said: “The next five weeks are going to be frantic as the parties finalise and communicate their policies and debate the merits of a hard or soft Brexit whilst thousands of candidates are on the campaign trail. We want to ensure that in the midst of all the rhetoric, the key issues for UK motorists are not discarded or forgotten – hence us publishing our 2017 Motoring Manifesto.
“There is clearly much at stake and many issues to debate but there has been some good progress in recent years in addressing some of the most important issues for both private motorists and businesses. We want to ensure that these advances aren’t lost and that we have a clear commitment from the next government to maintain and increase investment in our roads infrastructure, tackle air quality and unjust parking practices, and encourage drivers to take-up of ultra-low emission vehicles.
“We believe it is also vital with motoring taxation at record levels that there should be a commitment not to increase fuel duty or Insurance Premium Tax for the duration of the next Parliament, as these hit motorists hard and could stifle economic growth.”
“Politicians would do well to listen to the UK’s 38 million motorists, who each year contribute around £40bn to the Exchequer. For them driving and using our roads is an integral and essential part of their lives and also those who rely on road transport even if they are not motorists themselves.”
The value of motoring and road transport to the economy cannot be underestimated. The link between jobs and road transport is indisputable with 75% of journeys to work across the UK undertaken by bus or car and 76% of all freight moved by road. In addition, 77% of motorists tell us that they would find it very difficult to adjust their lifestyle to being without a car.