Fuel Duty — Balance against oil prices — rejected — 16 Jul 2008 at 18:50

Stuart Bell MP, Middlesbrough voted with the majority (No).

The majority of MPs voted against the motion, which read:[1]

  • This House
  • notes that oil prices are now almost $150 per barrel;
  • further notes that diesel in the UK is the most expensive in Europe; acknowledges the sharp rises in fuel prices over the past year and the resulting impact on headline inflation figures;
  • recognises the financial pressure this places on hard-pressed families already struggling with soaring food and housing costs;
  • condemns the Government's continued dithering over the implementation of the two pence increase in fuel duty, planned for the autumn, as neither a sustainable nor a stable way to make tax policy;
  • further notes that a balancing mechanism to adjust fuel duty in line with changes in the price of oil would have reduced the current price of petrol by five pence per litre since March 2008; and
  • calls upon the Government to consider the implementation of such a balancing mechanism to ensure that the burden of rising oil prices is shared fairly between government and families, the sensitivity of the public finances to changing oil prices is reduced and the cost of carbon can be stabilised to send consistent environmental signals.

In its place the an alternative motion was proposed:[2]

  • This House
  • recognises the pressure that the increase in fuel prices, caused by pressures from the international oil market, has put on business and families;
  • welcomes the Chancellor's decision to defer the planned two pence per litre increase in fuel duty that was due to take place in April 2008;
  • notes that while fuel prices have increased by over 20 per cent. since last October, fuel duty has stayed constant;
  • also notes that had the escalator introduced in 1993 been in place since 1999, fuel duty would now be 29 pence per litre higher;
  • supports the Government's global leadership on this issue, in particular at the recent Jeddah Energy Meeting, and welcomes the Government's intention to host a follow up to this meeting in London later this year;
  • further recognises that the Government does not receive a significant windfall when oil prices rise, because any additional revenues from the North Sea are likely to be offset by other effects; and
  • therefore further notes that a system which would automatically cut fuel duty when oil prices rise would be destabilising, creating volatility for the public finances and uncertainty for the financing of public services, and would create considerable pressure for tax increases elsewhere.

which passed without a further vote.

Note that when this proposal was made to the Finance Act earlier in the year to actually establish such a balancing mechanism in law, virtually no Libdem or Conservative MPs voted either way.[3]

Citizens interested in the subject might also be interested in another scheme relating to rural petrol prices which was proposed at the same time.[4]

Debate in Parliament | Source |

Party Summary

Votes by party, red entries are votes against the majority for that party.

What is Tell? '+1 tell' means that in addition one member of that party was a teller for that division lobby.

What are Boths? An MP can vote both aye and no in the same division. The boths page explains this.

What is Turnout? This is measured against the total membership of the party at the time of the vote.

PartyMajority (No)Minority (Aye)BothTurnout
Con0 164 (+2 tell)086.0%
DUP0 3033.3%
Ind2 30100.0%
Lab292 (+2 tell) 0084.0%
LDem46 0073.0%
PC0 2066.7%
SNP0 2033.3%
UKIP0 10100.0%
Total:340 175082.4%

Rebel Voters - sorted by party

MPs for which their vote in this division differed from the majority vote of their party. You can see all votes in this division, or every eligible MP who could have voted in this division

Sort by: Name | Constituency | Party | Vote

NameConstituencyPartyVote
no rebellions

About the Project

The Public Whip is a not-for-profit, open source website created in 2003 by Francis Irving and Julian Todd and now run by Bairwell Ltd.

There are lots of plans afoot, including extensive redevelopment of the site and plans for new functionality. To keep up with what's happening, please check out the blog. We're working on updating all the contact details throughout the site, but if you'd like to talk to us about the project, please email [email protected]

The Whip on the Web

Advertisement - Helping keeping PublicWhip alive