Steve McCabe MP calls on Cameron and Osborne to stop the New Year Fuel Rise

Steve McCabe MP, Birmingham Selly Oak, is calling on the Chancellor to cancel the government’s New Year 3p per litre petrol tax rise that will hit local people hard when it comes into force on 1st January 2013.

As well as helping people on low and middle incomes, stopping the petrol tax rise would also help businesses and the flatlining economy.

Labour is calling on the government to pay for this move by clamping down on identified tax avoidance loopholes. For example, there is a growing problem with some employment agencies forcing workers to become employees of an umbrella company. They then falsely inflate the worker’s travel and food expense claims, reducing tax and national insurance, and pocket the avoided tax as profits.

HM Revenue and Customs has forecast that these schemes cost the exchequer £650m a year but more recent estimates have put it as high as £1 billion a year. Delaying the fuel duty rise until April 2013 would only cost around £350 million.

Steve said:

“At a time when the cost of living is rising and our economy is fragile, it cannot be right to hit middle and low income families and small businesses with another tax rise.  Especially as earlier this year the Chancellor awarded a tax cut for millionaires.

“The price of petrol is now more than £1.36 a litre, a massive rise of 15p since the Tories came to power. People in Birmingham are really feeling the squeeze from the government's VAT rise, which has already added 3p to the price of a litre of petrol, and deep cuts to things like tax credits.

“Delaying January's fuel duty rise, at least until April, would provide some much-needed financial relief.

“If the government are really on the side of ordinary working families they will delay the fuel duty rise.”


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