MP calls for increase to rural fuel derogation

Western Isles MP, Angus MacNeil has called on the UK Government to increase the rural fuel derogation.

Mr MacNeil who long campaigned for the rural fuel derogation which was eventually introduced in 2011, called again for an increase during a debate on fuel prices at Westminster.

Commenting Angus MacNeil MP said: “Our islands and rural areas pay more tax per litre and there is no doubt that the rural fuel derogation has helped ease the burden on motorists, but in general, we are still paying more tax per litre in the islands than anywhere in the UK.

“During a debate at Westminster, I asked Minister for Energy, Amber Rudd MP, if consideration would be given to increasing the amount of the derogation, which is currently 5p per litre, but given that the money set aside for the rural fuel derogation was not spent,

“I asked if 7p or 8p per litre would be considered.

“Although oil prices have fallen, the aim of the derogation is to equalise fuel prices between island and urban areas. Evidently, this has not been achieved yet.

“Therefore, given there was still money in the pot concerned, it seems only fair that the Chancellor gets the same tax per litre from all over the UK.

“Islands motorists should not be disadvantaged in comparison to those in cities, especially given that the sums concerned are small to the Treasury, but significant to islands motorists.

“While oil prices might be low now, there is no guarantee that the situation will not be reversed, so what is important here therefore, is the principle of the matter.

“The Minister Amber Rudd, described me as being ambitious for my constituents in seeking an extension to the derogation, I make no apology for that.”