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the Ford Focus, not forward focused budget

25 March 2011

The budget may help out motorists and truckers fearful of oil hikes but it does nothing for the environment. George Osborne has abandoned the fuel escalator that would have seen a 5p per litre increase on fuel duties and surprisingly cut it by 1p per litre. To counterbalance the £2bn cost of the cut, he has introduced a fair fuel stabiliser which will hit the coffers of the North Sea oil producers.

This measure, though affords Osborne short term popularity, and may not last that long as the regime depends on oil prices remaining high; if they drop, the escalator starts up again.
With the introduction of a scheme that may in fact cause greater volatility in the oil market the budget does nothing to really allay fears surrounding the price of oil. Further, by not attempting to stymie the UK’s addiction to fossil fuels, it does not assist in the goal of weaning ourselves off oil and onto more sustainable fuels.

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Richard Barlow

Richard Barlow

Partner and Head of Government Sector

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