Gas hits 5.79 a gallon in England

Discussion in 'Politics' started by Maverick74, Jun 3, 2004.

  1. Maverick74


    June 3, 2004, 3:21PM

    Average gasoline price hits $5.79 in England
    Associated Press

    LONDON -- Prime Minister Tony Blair's government said today it had no plans to shelve a scheduled hike in fuel taxes despite the threat of disruptive protests.

    Surging world oil prices have pushed average retail gasoline prices to $5.79 a gallon in Britain. A loose coalition of truckers and farmers, who blockaded fuel depots across Britain in 2000, have threatened similar action if prices do not fall.

    Together with the main opposition Conservative Party, they are demanding the government shelve plans to increase fuel tax by 13 cents a gallon in September.

    Blair shrugged off the pressure, noting OPEC's agreement today to raise its oil production ceiling by 2 million barrels a day next month in a bid to rein in prices.

    "We've simply got to see how that settles down," he said. "Of course we are sympathetic to the concerns of business and indeed motorists."

    "I think we will approach that ... by balancing these interests in a sensible way. We don't need to take the decision right now, but we will take it later," he added.

    Transport Secretary Alistair Darling said today the government had lobbied OPEC countries to increase production and said its taxation policy would not be swayed by protests.

    "I think we should just look at this is in a measured way. We have a problem with international oil prices, we are doing our best to sort that out," he told British Broadcasting Corp. radio.

    "What you don't do when you are setting tax policy is allow yourself to be battered around from day to day," he added.

    Protesters have scheduled a demonstration for next Wednesday, planning a slow-moving convoy of trucks blocking traffic in the northern English city of Newcastle-upon-Tyne.

    David Handley, one of the organizers of the fuel protests of September 2000, warned that further action would be taken if prices did not fall.

    Conservative leader Michael Howard said today he would support lawful protests and insisted the government should drop its plans for a tax hike.

    "People are entitled to protest peacefully and within the law," he told GMTV television. "My main message is a very simple one to (Treasury chief) Gordon Brown and that is do not put fuel duty up in September."

    The government accused the Conservatives of political opportunism before the June 10 European Parliament and local council elections.

    Britain's fuel taxes account for nearly three-quarters of the cost of gasoline and are among Europe's highest. The tax is $3.35 a gallon).

    OPEC agreed today to raise its production ceiling by 2 million barrels a day next month in a bid to bring down uncomfortably high prices of crude. But analysts say consumers won't be paying less for gasoline anytime soon, as factors such as refinery constraints will continue to have an effect at the pump.
  2. Mav, IIRC, gas in the UK was around $2 a gallon when it was 30 cents here. So comparatively they are getting off light relative to us.

    Lot's of very little cars in Europe. I haven't been there in years, but last I saw, it was tiny cars and big expensive cars. (No SUVs and no "mid and full size" American type cars). So the guys with the Rolls, Bentleys, and Jags probably don't care too much. The Minis etc., were always relatively fuel efficient.

    But, from all you have said, I would think you would believe all that tax on petrol in the UK is a good thing.....I thought you believed in sales taxes and VAT and all that:confused:

    BTW, I was kind of surprised when I was in Thailand a few weeks ago. Gas there was about the same as here....less actually. It was around 45 cents or so per liter. And if you see a big car THERE, it is probably the King or a govt. official (actually there are some big Mercedes and BMWs, but often with much smaller engines than they sell in our market).

    I think you and I can agree on one thing (always a pleasure)'s time to stop depending so heavily on petroleum. We are using the same technology for over 100 years. It's been a good run. Lot's of money made and spent. But hell, what has changed less in that period of time?

  3. Maverick74


    I'm getting tired of all the whining here in the US that we pay $2 a gallon when we pay by far the cheapest gas in the world. I just wanted to put our gas prices in perspective.
  4. Over in Euroland, aren't the roads a helluva lot better than the ones here?
    And is it true that all road signs are light up so the vehicles' lights are actually pointed down on the road rather than how they are positioned here in the states ?

    I'd pay more per gallon for great roads and signs light up so headlights can be focuse on the road and not eye level.