Fuel duty and minimum wage rises today

Related tags National minimum wage Minimum wage

Diesel prices will rise 1ppl today in the second of three planned fuel duty rises during 2010/11, while the National Minimum wage also increases from £5.80 to £5.93/hour.

Freight Transport Association chief economist Simon Chapman said that successive, above -inflation tax rises on fuel since 2009 meant that the freight industry was shouldering a “disproportionate burden”​ in narrowing the public sector deficit.

“With another rise due in January and above-inflation rises set for the next three years, many businesses hit hard by the recent recession will feel like they are on borrowed time. The price of oil is the highest it’s been for three months and is set to rise further as we come into the autumn peak period of oil demand.”

It was particularly frustrating that tax raised from fuel was not being pumped back into improving the UK’s transport infrastructure, said Chapman.

“For every £1 of tax raised from road users, only 22p is currently spent on the road network. If the government persists with the strategy of above-inflation rises in fuel duty, it should ringfence the element that exceeds inflation and invest it in those road and rail networks in most urgent need of improvement.”

National Minimum Wage

Meanwhile, the GMB union welcomed today's rise in the National Minimum wage, which has increased from £5.80/hour to £5.93 for staff aged 21 and over, from £4.83 to £4.92 for workers aged 18 to 20 and from £3.57 to £3.64 for workers aged 16 to 17.

GMB general secretary Paul Kenny said: "The National Minimum Wage was the crowning piece of legislation of the last Labour government and this increase for 2010 was put in place before the general election.

"It is essential that the electorate keep up the pressure on the Tory-led government not to dilute this essential protection for ordinary workers and their families."

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