Shadow Chancellor Ed Balls has said delaying the 3p fuel duty rise will help people and fleet fuel businesses already feeling the pinch
Labour is to force a Commons vote on Monday that it hopes will lead to the postponement of a planned 3p per litre rise in fuel duty in January.
The Treasury said the postponement of earlier planned duty rises had already helped keep fuel costs down.
Writing on the PoliticsHome website, Mr Balls argued that a strong economic recovery was not yet secure and families and fleet businesses were still feeling the squeeze as well as the price of fuel affecting the economy.
Postponing the planned 3p rise until at least April could be paid for, he believes, by clamping down on tax avoidance schemes used by employment agencies.
The Government needs to act and clamp down on those avoiding paying their fair share of tax”
“There is a growing problem with some employment agencies forcing workers to become employees of an umbrella company,” he wrote.
“They then falsely inflate the worker’s travel and food expense claims, reducing tax and national insurance, and pocket the avoided tax as profits.
According to Mr Balls, “Even if only a proportion of that money was recouped it could pay for the fuel duty rise to be put off until next spring.”
Labour will use one of its allotted opposition day debates in the Commons to force the vote, which is non-binding.
Pressure group the Taxpayers’ Alliance launched a campaign earlier this year to have fuel duties frozen until 2015.
Another campaign group, FairFuelUK, claims that allowing the 3p tax rise to go ahead in January could lead to 35,000 job losses, and hit economic growth.
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