Island fuel duty discount ‘should be increased’

Argyll and Bute’s Westminster MP Alan Reid has called for the 5p per litre island fuel duty discount to be increased to seven or eight pence a litre.

Mr Reid’s appeal was made after a summit on fuel duty, held in Glasgow, at which Treasury officials admitted the current scheme is costing less than expected.

Speaking after the event, which was attended by three fuel distribution companies and filling station operators from Mull, Coll and Tiree, Mr Reid said: “The Treasury revealed at the summit that the five pence a litre island fuel duty discount scheme is costing them less than the £5 million they budgeted for.

“I will be lobbying the Chancellor in the run-up to the Budget to increase the island discount to seven or eight pence a litre since this would still leave the scheme within budget.”

Mr Reid also said the Treasury official present at the summit had revealed that, although filling station operators are legally required to pass the 5p per litre discount on to the motorist at the pumps, there is no such requirement placed on the distributors.

Mr Reid said, “I called on the distributors to make their prices public so that we can see whether or not they are treating island motorists fairly and passing on the full discount.

“I hope that they will agree to publish this information. Pricing transparency is of vital importance.”