Fuel duty will be frozen again for the 12th consecutive year in 2022-23, the UK Government has announced.

Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak confirmed the measure in today’s Budget speech.

It comes after soaring fuel prices in recent months, with the RAC announcing earlier this week that the average price of petrol at UK filling stations had hit a new record high, while diesel prices are also close to record levels.

Reacting to the announcement, the motoring organisation’s spokesman Simon Williams said: “We welcome the chancellor’s confirmation that duty will continue to remain frozen at 57.95p a litre. With pump prices at record highs, now would have been the worst possible time to change tack and hike up costs still further at the forecourt. 

“If duty had gone up, RAC data suggests the average price of a litre of petrol could have reached 147p taking the cost of a tank to over £80, and diesel an eye-watering 150p.”

Although he welcomed the continued freeze, Williams added that he was disappointed the government had not done more to help lower fuel bills.

He said: “As VAT is charged on the final cost at the pumps, a temporary cut in VAT to motor fuels would have benefitted drivers immediately.”

Giving his reaction, Nexus Vehicle Rental CEO David Brennan said: “With fuel prices currently at the highest level in eight years, the cancellation of the planned rise in fuel duty should be celebrated. 

“This will not only have a positive impact on individuals and families, but it will also benefit businesses operating large fleets – enabling them to save an estimated £30 per van for an average tank of fuel and over £120 for HGVs. 

“The government clearly recognises its continued support of the transport and logistics sector is so critical to the UK economy.”