Road transport operators will be giving a cautious welcome to the cancellation of the 3p per litre fuel duty increase planned for January 2013. The Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne, confirmed in his Autumn Statement that the 3p per litre increase, which had already been deferred from earlier in the year, would be cancelled altogether and subsequent fuel duty increases would be deferred from 1 April to 1 Sept for the remainder of this parliament. Much of the credit for achieving this must go to FairFuel UK, The RHA and their supporters. It has been estimated that the January increase would cost an operator with ten HGVs around £14,000 per annum. So any help is welcome in an already challenging economic environment. With the Chancellor indicating that the “age of austerity” would last for at least another six years and scaled-down forecasts on growth from the Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) more drastic measures may be required. Research from British Car Auctions (BCA), revealed that 70% of car owners admitted they had taken steps to cut their car operating costs. For many people fuel now accounts for a significant part of their monthly income. Research commissioned by FairFuel UK from the National Institute for Economic and Social Research (NIESR) has found that a 3p reduction in fuel duty could generate an additional 75 thousand jobs, grow the economy overall by 0.2% at a net cost to the Treasury of £3bn. Petrol & diesel are the life blood of the economy so perhaps now is the time for bold action and a cut in fuel duty.