Fuels: Northern Ireland

HM Treasury written question – answered on 5th December 2017.

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Photo of Gregory Campbell Gregory Campbell Shadow DUP Spokesperson (International Development), Shadow DUP Spokesperson (Cabinet Office)

To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether he plans to review the areas in Northern Ireland that qualify for the rural fuel duty rebate scheme in light of the availability of cheaper fuel in the Irish Republic?

Photo of Andrew Jones Andrew Jones The Exchequer Secretary

When the government proposed the rural fuel rebate scheme, it set out certain criteria for which areas would qualify, in order to present a robust case to the European Commission for state aid approval. The government has no plans to make changes to the mainland rural fuel rebate scheme, since amendments to the scheme now would require a further state aid approval process with the European Commission.

However, the government recognises that fuel costs remain a significant part of business and household costs, particularly in rural areas. That is why at Autumn Budget 2017, the Government announced the main rate of fuel duty would remain frozen for the eighth successive year, which should benefit rural drivers as well as the wider motoring population, saving the average driver £160 every year compared to the pre-2010 fuel duty escalator plans.

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