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I bitterly regret backing Boris Johnson – now it’s clear who the fuel buyer’s choice for Prime Minister is

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DEAR Liz & Rishi,

Pump prices are at last edging down – albeit at a snail’s pace.

The crippling cost of filling up for ­Britain’s 37million motorists must be tackled by our next Prime Minister

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The crippling cost of filling up for ­Britain’s 37million motorists must be tackled by our next Prime Minister
Liz Truss told The Sun’s leadership debate on TalkTV that Rishi Sunak’s one-year temporary 5p cut in fuel duty will remain permanent

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Liz Truss told The Sun’s leadership debate on TalkTV that Rishi Sunak’s one-year temporary 5p cut in fuel duty will remain permanentCredit: PA

But, based on current wholesale prices, petrol and diesel at the pumps should be at least 20 PENCE per litre lower by now.

The crippling cost of filling up for ­Britain’s 37million motorists must be tackled by our next Prime Minister.

Sky-high pump prices have not just altered our driving behaviour.

For a substantial number of struggling families and small businesses, these extortionate costs have ruined their ability to operate effectively, live a normal everyday life and enjoy unconstrained freedom to drive.

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The loathing of big oil corporation bosses by people who are struggling to pay to heat their homes and fill up their cars cannot be over-exaggerated.

Shell and BP’s latest obscene profits have skyrocketed on the back of global oil price unpredictability.

ILL-INFORMED IDEALISM

These huge profits have not been made due to any brilliant business acumen.

It has all been down to pure luck.

This is a cartel business model making hay out of an essential resource and allowed to do so without any real scrutiny.

Worse still, these corporate leviathans are deliberately not passing significant wholesale falls in petrol and diesel prices on to drivers.

BP tripled their profits in the last three months to £7billion but they have refused to cut pump prices, like its rival Total-Energies is doing in France.

Profit-making is good but profiteering due to a war is abhorrent.

The Government must take much of the blame for making the already intolerable cost-of-living crisis worse.

Ministers — including the two of you, as the ex-Chancellor and Foreign Secretary — have hit motorists with higher than necessary fuel taxation and allowed the fuel supply chain’s opportunistic profiteering to go unchecked for far too long.

So, Liz and Rishi, which of you is best at ensuring drivers and the economy are never exploited by big business?

Which one of you is bold enough to build a fair and long-term road-user strategy that the whole country can get behind too?

In 2019 I wrote an article in The Sun backing Boris Johnson as the motorist’s friend and the best choice as PM.

I bitterly regret that endorsement.

Since then, under your very uncharacteristic Conservative Government, we have endured a tsunami of anti-driver policies forced through on the back of costly virtue signalling and ill-informed idealism.

Your green agenda is set to wreck the economy in the coming decades.

Low Traffic Neighbourhoods, Ultra Low Emission Zones, an ill-thought-out 2030 ban on the sale of new petrol and diesel cars plus a flood of new cycle lanes are just some of the odious plans motorists have endured.

Ministers — including the two of you, as the ex-Chancellor and Foreign Secretary — have hit motorists with higher than necessary fuel taxation and allowed the fuel supply chain’s opportunistic profiteering to go unchecked for far too long.

Recently, I have met with both of you.

Rishi, you exclaimed with good humour that I and MP Robert Halfon have been “the bane of your life” for many years, costing the Treasury billions in lost fuel tax revenue.

I asked both of you one question: “Will you cut fuel duty by at least 20p to ease the cost-of-living crisis?”

Germany, France, Ireland and Spain have recognised that cutting fuel duty will reduce inflationary pressure.

Germany dropped duty by 25p per litre and, as a result, their inflation dropped in June to 7.6 per cent, compared to 9.4 per cent here.

The Treasury is awash with nearly £4billion of extra VAT due to needlessly high pump prices. Liz, while warmly supportive, you were sadly non-committal, saying all growth-stimulating tax decisions will be on the Treasury’s priority list in an immediate emergency Budget.

You have given drivers some encouragement, telling The Sun’s leadership debate on TalkTV that Rishi’s one-year temporary 5p cut in fuel duty will remain permanent.

Rishi, you said the same, despite the previous plan being for it to revert back in March 2023 to its former level.

Liz, you say you are a traditional tax-cutter but are still openly shying away from supporting motorists by taxing them considerably less.

Rishi, you also sidestepped my plea to cut fuel duty in a big way, proudly claiming you had done much more than Germany by implementing other policies to relieve the cost-of-living crisis.

FAIR PRICING AT PUMPS

In a fit of desperation you have U-turned on your not-cutting-taxes mantra by saying you will certainly drop VAT on household energy bills. But again, only temporarily.

FairFuelUK supporters favour you, Liz, over Rishi, because of your tax-cutting promises. But the message is clear to both of you: Motorists need help now.

At the stroke of a pen, whichever one of you ends up in No10 next month can set the UK on a path to lower inflation with no negative impact on the Treasury’s ­revenue whatsoever.

It’s simple.

Cut Fuel Duty by 20p, like most of Europe has done, and introduce FairFuelUK’s PumpWatch immediately to monitor fair pricing as we fill up.

Drop the costly net zero 2050 plans and instead focus on the economy and improving the finances and lives of hard-pressed motorists.

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Do these popular, common-sense political asks and Labour will not get the keys to No10 in 2024.

Yours, Howard

Howard Cox is the co-founder of FairFuel UK

FairFuelUK supporters favour Liz, over Rishi, because of her tax-cutting promises

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FairFuelUK supporters favour Liz, over Rishi, because of her tax-cutting promisesCredit: Getty





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