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Drivers Could Soon Be Charged To Use Roads

Drivers Could Soon Be Charged To Use Roads

Rishi Sunak is contemplating new plans which would see motorists charged for using roads, according to new reports.

The Chancellor, 40, is mulling over the plans after the economy is facing a £40 billion tax shortfall due to the rising popularity of electric cars.

Sunak is "very interested" in a national road pricing scheme, but it is unclear how the charges would be calculated, according to The Times newspaper.

Rishi Sunak is considering new plans (Credit: PA Images)
Rishi Sunak is considering new plans (Credit: PA Images)
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The scheme would overhaul the current road system. As it stands, the UK only has one major toll road - the M6 Toll in the West Midlands. Drivers may also face levies when using particular tunnels and bridges.

Motorists pay 57.95p in fuel duty for each litre of petrol and diesel. This figure has been frozen since March 2011.

Although it seems a miniscule amount, fuel duty brings in a staggering £28 billion a year - which amounts to 1.3 per cent of the national income.

Toll roads are not a staple here in the UK (Credit: Unsplash)
Toll roads are not a staple here in the UK (Credit: Unsplash)

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However, there is set to be a proposed ban on new petrol and diesel cars as soon as 2030 as part of efforts to reach net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.

But while electric vehicles are good for the environment, they may cause funding issues for the UK economy.

President of the AA, Edmund King, said of the news: "The Government can't afford to lose £40bn from fuel duty and car tax when the electric revolution arrives.

Plans were initially scrapped under Labour (Credit: PA Images)
Plans were initially scrapped under Labour (Credit: PA Images)
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"It is always assumed that Road Pricing would be the solution but that has been raised every five years since 1964 and is still perceived by most as a 'poll tax on wheels'."

King's proposed solution is to offer drivers an allowance of 3000 miles a year free of charge, with any additional mileage potentially being subject to a fee.

The Labour government initially backed plans for a national road pricing strategy, but abandoned plans after a petition opposing the idea reached 1.8 million signatures.

Featured Image Credit: PA Images

Topics: Politics

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Kimberley Bond

Kim is a journalist at Tyla, and has previously worked at the Evening Standard, Radio Times as well as several national newspapers. A showbiz obsessive and a television fanatic, Kim is particularly interested in celebrity gossip, A-list events and the latest releases on either the big or small screen. Contact her at kimberley.bond@tyla.com