Fuel duty tax cut planned for millions by Boris – but Rishi Sunak refusing to budge

The Chancellor is due to make a joint announcement on the current cost of living crisis alongside the Prime Minister as the pair seek to “level with” hard-working Britons. Mr Sunak is thought resisting introducing tax cuts until there is a drop in the rate of inflation.

Costs have risen by more than nine percent over the last 12 months according to the latest Consumer Prices Index.

Economists have warned inflation could remain high until 2024.

But the Chancellor is facing demands from Tory backbenchers, those within the Cabinet, and even his own boss to do more to slash costs for voters up and down the country before then.

The speech with the Prime Minister was planned to be given in May but was pushed back by Downing Street after a the pair failed to agree on the contents of the intervention.

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Officials say more time is needed for the two neighbours to come up with a plan to announce to the country.

In hints of a rift between Mr Johnson and Mr Sunak over the future of taxes, the Prime Minister yesterday appeared to suggest he wanted to further cut fuel duty.

In March 5p was slashed from the tax, but the Treasury still rakes in 82p per litre in duty and VAT.

Mr Johnson told reporters last night that he was listening to the concerns of voters.

“The lesson that I think people like me need to learn from what is going on, the inflationary pressures,” he said as he spoke of the cost rises hitting Britons.

“At the pumps people are thinking ‘this Government could do more to help with the cost of fuel’, people are thinking ‘what can this Government do to help me with the cost of food’.”

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A No10 official reiterated the suggestion, saying it was keeping “support under review”.

Heaping the pressure on Mr Sunak to do something, former Cabinet minister David Davis yesterday said the Government should prioritise tax cuts over infrastructure investment.

He told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “Obviously you want to build more hospitals and we will and we are, obviously we want to build more railway lines.

“The simple truth is that there are priorities in everybody’s life and for most of the people in the red wall seats the first issue is paying the bills.

“If the Government is stopping you doing that, that is a real problem.”

Dismissing the calls for action on tax, a source close to discussions on the speech told The Times: “This speech will not be about tax cuts.

“They’re a matter for fiscal events.

“It’s about setting out a medium to long-term plan for dealing with the cost-of-living crisis.”