Motoring Tax is Highway Robbery Says IAM

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Only 38 pence of every pound that motorists pay at the pump is for fuel - 62 per cent is tax in the form of fuel duty and VAT, according to Motoring taxation and public spending, the latest report released today by road safety charity the IAM (Institute of Advanced Motorists).

Only 38 pence of every pound that motorists pay at the pump is for fuel - 62 per cent is tax in the form of fuel duty and VAT, according to Motoring taxation and public spending, the latest report from road safety charity the IAM (Inistitute of Advanced Motorists).

The report also finds that:

  •     The percentage of tax paid at the pump rose from 47 per cent in 1980 to 75 per cent in 2000. It has fallen to 62 per cent in 2010 as a result of increases in the price of oil.
  •     In 2010, the pump price of petrol increased by 27 per cent and that of diesel by 18 per cent. In the first half of this year the pump price of petrol increased by eight per cent and diesel by 12 per cent.
  •     Motorists paid £28,747 million in tax and duty in 1985-6 compared to £43,885 million in 2007-8 in real terms (1).
  •     While motorists are paying more generally, the amount paid per individual car owner has fallen. More cars on the road are spreading the tax burden among more motorists.
  •     The government spends only about one-third (£12,752 million) of its total tax revenue from road users (£43,885 million) on roads and local public transport.
  •     Increased spending in the past decade has been mainly on public transport; spending on local roads has also increased substantially but is likely to fall considerably from now on.
  •     Since 2002, the government has spent more on rail infrastructure than road infrastructure, although rail is used for only seven per cent of all passenger travel. In 2008 the government spent £4,807 million on road infrastructure compared to £5,567 million on rail infrastructure.
  •     Motorists and businesses spend ten times more on buying and running their vehicles (£42,700 million) than the government spends on roads (£4,807 million).

IAM director of policy and research Neil Greig said: “Using so little of the taxes motorists pay on road upkeep is plainly unfair. Motorists are also paying the price as Britain’s potholed and increasingly dangerous roads take their toll, damaging tyres, wheels, steering and suspension.

"Cuts are clearly going to have an impact on transport investment, but as more roads become more potholed and dangerous, spending on infrastructure now will save money in the long-term"

Notes to Editors:
1.     Amounts for an earlier year are increased by the inflation factor between that year and 2007-8 also known as ‘in real terms’.

2.    Full report. Motoring taxation and public spending,
http://www.iam.org.uk/images/stories/downloads/Policy_and_Research/MotoringTaxesv2011.pdf

3.    The IAM is the UK’s largest independent road safety charity, dedicated to improving standards and safety in driving, motorcycling and cycling. The commercial division of the IAM operates through its occupational driver training company IAM Drive & Survive. The IAM has more than 200 local volunteer groups and over 100,000 members in the UK and Ireland. It is best known for the advanced driving test and the advanced driving, motorcycling and cycling courses. Its policy and research division offers advice and expertise on road safety.
ENDS ALL
Media contacts:
IAM Press Office – 020 8996 9777
press.office(at)iam(dot)org(dot)uk
ISDN broadcast lines available

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Ben Schofield

Caroline Holmes
IAM
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