Chancellor Jeremy Hunt has revealed his Spring Budget – and two key policies are set to impact drivers across Britain.

Unlike previous announcements from the Chancellor in the last few years – like last year’s Autumn Budget – the automotive sector wasn’t one of the sectors focused on for changes. However, there were still several key plans that were given by Hunt to the other MPs in the House of Commons.

Last year, Hunt announced a raft of updates to fuel duty, electronic vehicle (EV) taxation, company car taxation, VAT on EV charge points, and Insurance Premium Tax (IPT).

For this Spring Budget, the Chancellor focused on funding for potholes and continuing the freeze of fuel duty.

Potholes

Hunt has pledged £200m to local councils to help fix potholes across Britain.

This is a 20% increase to the funds set aside to deal with the issue.

The Chancellor told the House of Commons: “Following a wet then cold winter, I have received particularly strong representations about the curse of potholes.

“The Spending Review allocated £500m every year to the Potholes Fund but today I have decided to increase that fund by a further £200m next year to help local communities tackle this problem.”

RAC head of roads policy Nicholas Lyes said: “While welcome, another £200m is unlikely to make a big difference to the overall quality of our dilapidated local roads.

“We need to significantly increase funding for local road maintenance and improvement so councils can resurface roads properly rather than patching them up and hoping for the best.

“Last year, the Government spent £1.125bn on local roads in England which is in stark contrast to the £7bn that went into major roads from car tax, despite local roads covering so many more miles.”

Fuel Duty

The Chancellor announced that to help households across Britain, the planned 11p rise in fuel duty will be cancelled, maintaining last year’s 5p cut for another twelve months.

The Government believes that this will save a typical driver £100 a year.

Lyes commented: “We welcome the Government’s decision to keep the 5p fuel duty cut in place for another 12 months.

“The cut has given drivers some much-needed relief in what has been the most torrid year ever at the pumps, with price records being broken even after duty was cut.

“Given the importance of driving for consumers and businesses, duty should be kept low to help fight inflation.”

Other announcements

  • Vehicle Excise Duty (VED) uprating and Heavy Goods Vehicles (HGV) VED freeze – The government will uprate VED rates for cars, vans and motorcycles in line with RPI from 1 April 2023. To support the haulage sector, VED for HGVs will remain frozen for 2023-24.
  • Reform of HGV Levy – Following consultation in 2022, the Government will introduce a new reformed HGV levy from August 2023 – following the planned end of the current levy suspension period. The reforms to the HGV levy are a further step towards reflecting the environmental performance of the vehicle. The Government remains committed to ensuring that the levy applies to all HGVs using the UK road network.
  • National funding – £8.8bn is being set aside for a second round of the City Region Sustainable Transport Settlements. This will help to develop mass transit networks and sustainable transport options across England’s city regions.

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