Rishi Sunak savaged over leaked plans to cut fuel duty ‘Shovelling sand with a sieve’

Britons set for 'devastating hit' if Sunak policy fails says CBI boss

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After almost two years of severe lockdown restrictions and en route to carbon neutrality, prices are rising, and fast. Energy regulator Ofgem recently announced a 54 percent rise in the maximum allowed customer energy price from April, affecting millions of Britons, many of whom are already struggling to make ends meet. In a bid to support those struggling with rising costs, the Chancellor has hinted he will cut fuel duty.

Mr Sunak described this – an excise tax on the sale of fuel, currently levied at 58p a litre, or a reduced five per cent on domestic heating fuel – as “one of the biggest bills that people face”.

But many have hit back against touted plans to cut the duty by the five pence.

Some on social media suggested this would not go far enough in addressing the cost-of-living crisis.

Twitter user Richard Oneill urged Mr Sunak to “stop taking about fuel duty, for goodness sake”.

He added: “It’s 5 percent and goes nowhere near redressing the energy price increases!

“Don’t let Sunak get away with making a few adjustments and claiming a great victory. We need something far more substantial than that.”

@Lucy_cat_lady also wrote: “While I welcome any measures at all to help with the cost-of-living crisis, since fuel prices have risen more than 5p a litre in the last week alone, it’s like shovelling sand with a sieve.”

Mark Atkinson also joked: “5p a litre cut? It goes up more than that between a morning and afternoon!

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“It’s absolutely laughable.”

According to the times, any reduction in fuel duty would likely be “strictly time-limited” due to the Government’s commitment to reaching carbon net zero by 2050.

Businessman and former MEP Ben Habib recently described the drive towards neutrality as an additional burden upon those already suffering from the cost of living.

He told Express.co.uk: “It is going to undermine our national finances. It is also going to undermine efforts to level up the country.

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“The working class will not be able to cope with all the costs being foisted on them.”

But Mr Sunak insisted he was looking for new ways to lessen the burden of increasing prices.

He told Times Radio: “Where we can make a difference, where I can make a difference, of course I will and that has been my track record and it will continue to be how I conduct myself in this job.”

British finances will be further hit by the cost of the Government’s sanctions on Russia following the invasion of Ukraine.

Foreign Secretary Liz Truss last month warned: “The UK and our allies will have to undergo some economic hardship as a result of our sanctions.”

But she added: “Our hardships are nothing compared to those endured by the people of Ukraine.”

The Chancellor is expected to unveil his new plans tomorrow, on Wednesday, in his spring statement.

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