11 January 2011

Cameron under pressure to curb fuel prices as protest fears mount

David Cameron came under increasing pressure over the weekend to curb the UK’s mounting fuel prices ahead of threats of protests around the country.

Following a double rise from last week’s VAT increase and hikes in fuel duty, the cost of petrol has soared to almost £1.30 per litre angering motorists across and sparking fears of protests at the pumps.

Petrol station bosses also fear that the increase of 3.5 pence per litre will result in more criminal behaviour as motorists fail to pay after filling up their tanks.

Shortly before the General Election last year, Mr Cameron promised to introduce a ‘fair fuel price stabiliser’ which would see fuel duty drop in response to a rise in oil prices. At this time petrol prices were at a record £1.20 a litre.

Over the weekend Mr Cameron spoke about his pledged stabiliser policy stating, ‘We’re looking at that. It’s not an easy thing to put in place, but I would like to try and find some way of sharing the risk of higher fuel prices with the consumer.’

However, he later seemed to back track on his promise when he told the BBC, ‘I don’t want to raise people’s hopes too far because it is a difficult issue.’

John Redwood, former Tory Cabinet minister has publically implored the Prime Minister to introduce the policy immediately and to cut the price of duty to help struggling households and businesses.

It is thought that the Treasury will commission an independent assessment of the stabiliser proposal before any decision is made.

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