The year 2020 is off to a rough start, but the budget wasn’t exactly a disappointment. While several areas of development were addressed, there was also something in store for drivers.
Rishi Sunaka, the UK’s new Chancellor, has announced the budget and there are some highs and lows, both for drivers and car owners. Amongst his most popular moves is the fact that he has frozen fuel duty and has also given drivers with electric vehicles a fresh wave of relief with a new charging network package and much more.
Here’s more about what he has done and what’s coming.
Fuel duty stays the same
While many drivers would have liked a slash on fuel duty as fuel does constitute a regular expenditure and cuts out of the monthly budget, a larger percentage were okay with fuel duty staying the same. They just wanted to ensure that there was no spike and the money raised was used towards new roads-and that’s what they got. So, for the past ten years, fuel duty has been at a standstill and Sunaka points out, that this year this was considered to be impossible. However, he has ensured it due to popular demand.
The spike on fuel duty was to be encouraged in order to reduce pollution and also encourage drivers to switch to other vehicle types which caused less environmental harm. However, trends suggested that a spike would only mean a rise in driving costs and would not really serve as motivation to switch vehicle type or reduce the number of vehicles on the road. Hence, the cleaner air cause would not be benefitted.
$500 million to recharge electric vehicles
Electric vehicles are the new norm and the new budget is gearing up to facilitate drivers with electric cars with a pledged $500 million spread over the next five years to increase fast charging hubs. As most drivers feel anxious when they aren’t close to a recharging station and are low on battery, the new pledged investment is a sigh of relief as it will ensure that there is one available every 30 miles.
Electric car grant extended
As pollution is one of the biggest problems in the UK, specifically London, the motivation to change to an electric vehicle is imperative to change the environment in the long run. This is why the electric car grant has been given another $403 million to continue into the years 2022-23 and offers upto $3000 off the list price of a new electric vehicle. It previously was $3500.
However, this grant will make it easier for those who want to switch their vehicle but are finding it difficult to do so because of cost as research suggests it is the biggest barrier. The grant allows zero emission vehicles to stay out of the expensive car segment, allowing people to make the transition from fuel vehicles to electric vehicles easily.
Excited about buying a new car? Perhaps you should consider going electric.
Roads are an essential part of a progressive economy and breaks or potholes in roads must be repaired as soon as possible and the Chancellor understands this. Accordingly, £2.5 billion has been pledged to repair 50 million potholes in roads all over the UK. However, due to extreme weather conditions in the winter, this amount may not be sufficient for a five-year period.
According to the Asphalt Industry Alliance, approximately £9.3 billion is needed to improve roads all over the country. However, Mr. Sunak has also included local road upgrades in his plan, which includes projects such as Kew Bridge and the A12.
Miles of road being added
You can never have enough roads and getting to places quicker and without much hassle is a huge blessing. That is why a major £27 billion has been allotted to adding strategies roads here needed. This includes 4,000 miles of road, 20 different pathways connecting airports and and ports, and an estimated 100 junctions.
Traffic will be lighter and drivers will find it easier to get to places they need. Obviously, without the added traffic, roads can also be considered safer and less polluted.
Overall, the budget has given drivers several things to celebrate and is a breath of fresh air. Do you believe anything is missing or needs to be addressed? Let us know!