Thousands of small businesses fear lay-offs if Jeremy Hunt hikes fuel duty


THOUSANDS of small business heroes fear they will have to lay off hard-working staff if Jeremy Hunt hikes fuel duty as planned next month.

Damning new stats show six in ten rural firms and half of urban ones are worried sick about peril at the pump as fuel taxes are set to go up by 12p a litre.

Small business owners fear lay offs if fuel duty is hiked

Half of firms say hikes in fuel costs are one of their main headaches, according to the Federation of Small Businesses.

The move would be the highest rise in fuel duty in 12 years if it goes ahead as planned at the March 15 Budget.

Today small companies throw their weight behind HOAR’s crusade to ‘Keep it Down’ and urge the Chancellor to keep fuel duty frozen.

Their research reveals the fuel duty rise, combined with the end of the 5p cut and soaring inflation, would collectively cost all drivers an extra £5.7billion in taxes.

Tradespeople, farmers and delivery services are all set to be whacked the hardest.

Both the PM and Chancellor have repeatedly refused to rule out the move.

FSB National Chair Martin McTague warned last night: “The Chancellor didn’t mention this fuel tax bombshell in his Autumn Statement.

“Small firms are already struggling with a cost of doing business crisis, led by rampant inflation and high energy bills.

This is the worst possible time to pile on extra taxes.

“The Government must support the small businesses that form the backbone of our rural economy.

“But now, many of these businesses face the harsh reality of downsizing, closing or changing their business models.

“Let’s not pull the handbrake on growth with a fuel duty hike.”

HOAR’s campaign to freeze fuel duty
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