23 March 2004

The LPG industry breathed a huge sigh of relief following Gordon Brown’s Budget last week.

The chancellor backtracked on threatened tax hikes, feared to be up to 20p a litre – enough to kill off autogas for good.

Duty on LPG rises by 2.4p per litre, but will be ramped annually for three years. It will become 1p more expensive than sulphur-free petrol and diesel every year until 2007, but will remain 35p a litre cheaper than regular fuel.

Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders chief exec Chris Macgowan described the tax rise as ‘a shame, but nothing like a tragedy’.

Brown’s other budgetary changes include a freeze on VED tax discs, duty up 1.9p on unleaded and diesel from September, and duty up 1.4p on sulphur-free fuels

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