Ward requests a further explanation from Chancellor regarding rebated fuel tax

Donald Ward, Operations Director at metal recycling and waste management specialist, Ward, has renewed pleas to the Chancellor to postpone restrictions on red diesel to support businesses or explain what support is planned for businesses

Donald Ward, Operations Director at Derbyshire-based metal recycling and waste management specialist, Ward, has requested a further explanation from the Chancellor regarding the lack of support for businesses affected by the removal of the rebated fuel allowance.

On 17th March, Donald Ward wrote to the Right Hon, Rishi Sunak MP, the Chancellor of the Exchequer to leverage support in managing spiralling energy costs in the next budget by postponing the taxation of red diesel, or rebated fuel, for at least 12 months.

In lieu of a response, Donald Ward submitted a second letter on behalf of Ward and the many other Derbyshire-based businesses operating nationally within the metal recycling, building, construction and demolition sectors. This latest letter outlined how these businesses, which were considered ‘essential services’ during the pandemic, will now be significantly disadvantaged by this additional fuel surcharge against a backdrop of political and economic uncertainty and the ongoing situation in Ukraine.

Under the existing plans, from 1st April 2022, it will no longer be permitted to use rebated red diesel in most plant, machinery, and construction equipment. Instead, all equipment must use diesel or biofuels, on which the full rate of duty has been paid.

In the letter, Donald Ward states:

“The planned changes were, when originally announced, forecast to cost our business 70% more in operational costs with red diesel priced at 64.65 pence per litre (ppl) in December 2021, while white diesel was priced 109.91 ppl.

At the time of writing, red diesel has itself increased to 96.92 ppl, white diesel is now running at 177.3ppl and continuing to rise, as well as experiencing supply shortages.

For most of the metal recycling and construction sectors, we are completely reliant on diesel for our processing equipment, plant and machinery and lack of viable alternatives means no suitable alternatives are currently available.

Also requested in the original note was a phased approach to mitigate the impacts to business. We believe that neither of these requests have been addressed, despite raising concerns that the implementation would be disastrous for many waste and resource operators, construction and demolition businesses and result in unintended consequences impacting the environment, the wider economy and employment levels.”

The letter concludes with a further request of an explanation for the lack of support for businesses and what the Government’s plans are to help those affected.

Read the full letter here.