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The trade association for the LPG industry in the UK

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LP Gas Industry Demands a Fix to Fuel Duty in this Budget

UKLPG, the one voice of the UK LP Gas industry, will be demanding the Chancellor prevents the decline of an industry by freezing the current fuel duty regime and committing to it for a minimum of five years.

The current fuel duty regime for LPG Autogas means that motorists save up to 40% at the pump and contribute to a reduction in Green House Gas Emissions in the UK. Coupled with the immediate availability of LPG autogas, it is an attractive transition technology and currently the most viable alternative to conventional petrol/diesel cars and vans.

However since 2010 this government has failed to provide any certainty or stability for the market, two elements the Treasury Select Committee hailed as “hallmarks of good tax policy”.

Now all major motor manufacturers are absent from the UK market; fleet operators who are considering alternatives won’t consider LPG Autogas without certainty to ensure payback on their investment; and while the immediate savings ensure that consumers continue to convert in steady numbers a long term fiscal commitment would ensure the continuation of 900 UK jobs.

For example, the German Government provided certainty by committing to a period of 10 years. As a result the market has grown quickly with car manufacturers such as BMW and Vauxhall playing a significant role in the market. Germany now has 490,000 vehicles saving 2.5 million tonnes of CO2 annually (German LPG Association figures), and doubling their fleet since 2007.

A recent report produced by Pike Research in the US predicts that “almost 23 million Autogas vehicles will be operating on roads worldwide by 2020” (www.pikeresearch.com). The recent Directive, Deployment of Alternative Fuels Infrastructure, produced by the EU Commissionspecifically recognises LPG Autogas as an alternative fuel for Europe.

There is already an infrastructure in place of over 1400 filling stations following an initial investment by the industry of £50 million, and on-going investment for over a decade. Research and development by the industry has continued to improve on quality and innovations; with the introduction of an online centralised database for aftermarket conversions and the introduction of a direct injection compatible LPG Autogas system.