March sees record fuel prices
- 11 April 2022
- Posted by: Alan Feldberg
- Category: News
Pump prices rose more in March than in any previous month on record, according to the RAC Fuel Watch. This is despite the 5p fuel duty cut announced in the Spring Statement.
The average cost of a litre of unleaded petrol went up by a huge 11.62p to end the month at 163.28p per litre – the largest ever increase the RAC has recorded in a single month.
But the rise in petrol prices in March was dwarfed by what happened with the cost of diesel, with the average price steepling by an astonishing 22.06p a litre, ending the month at 177.29p.
Forecourt prices increased through March as a result of rising wholesale fuel costs, themselves caused by a further hike in the cost of oil following the start of the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
RAC fuel spokesman Simon Williams said: “March 2022 will go down in the history books as one of the worst months ever when it comes to pump prices – over the 22 years we have been monitoring pump prices as part of our Fuel Watch initiative we’ve never witnessed such extreme rises in prices over such a short period. To describe the current situation facing drivers at the forecourt as ‘bleak’ is therefore something of an understatement.
“Without question, these figures show in the starkest possible terms just how much fuel prices are contributing to the cost-of-living crisis which will be affecting households up and down the country. We know that so many drivers depend on their vehicles – for instance, because of a lack of feasible alternatives – so fuel prices must be starting to have an enormously detrimental effect on people’s finances, especially those on lower incomes.”
He continued: “The fact pump prices have fallen so little reflects the fact that the cost to retailers of buying fuel had been going up ahead of the Spring Statement. Had the Chancellor temporarily cut VAT rather than fuel duty on fuel, as we asked him to do, the impact on pump prices would have been immediate with drivers benefitting straight away. Cutting VAT would also have gone some way towards shielding drivers from future increases – something a cut in duty just can’t do.”