By Lois Avery
Motorists will pay more for petrol from today (Friday) after fuel duty rose by a penny per litre.
The price rise follows the previous government’s fuel duty increase, which the Coalition government failed to scrap when it came into power.
The AA has criticised the price rise, saying petrol and diesel prices today are already at least 10p a litre higher than this time last year.
AA president Edmund King said the fuel duty increase ”highlights a series of contradictions that make it hard for drivers to accept.”
He also questions the need to raise prices when the government is already generating an extra 1p-a-litre VAT following recent price hikes.
"Pushing the petrol price almost to the level of the 2008 record high simply continues the folly of creating more pain for less gain. This increase could backfire as it will hinder economic growth,” he added.
However, the AA has also warned that the government’s plan to raise extra revenue through the price rise may backfire because fuel consumption has fallen significantly as a result of the recession.
Figures show that petrol sales fell by 5.8 per between April and June 2010 compared with the same period last year. The AA says this fall was driven by high petrol prices.