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Drop Petrol Tax Increases Says NZ First

Drop Petrol Tax Increases Says NZ First

New Zealand First transport spokesperson Peter Brown is calling for the Government to put a stop to increasing petrol taxes following further petrol price rises.

“Despite high crude oil prices, much of the current cost of petrol reflects the taxes collected by the Government, with less than half of that tax revenue collected actually being spent on essential transport infrastructure and road safety activities,” Mr Brown said.

“The introduction of the new Customs and Excise (Motor Spirits) Amendment Bill in April next year signals the fourth unnecessary increase in petrol levies since Labour came to power in 1999.

“In July 2001 they increased petrol tax from 17.8 cents a litre to 18.5 cents a litre through the Crown Revenue Petroleum Excise Tax, and in March 2002 the National Roads Fund saw an increase in petrol tax from 13.5 cents a litre to 17.7 cents a litre.

“Last year’s Injury Prevention, Rehabilitation and Compensation Amendment Bill further increased the petrol levies used to fund ACC from 2.3 cents a litre to 5.08 cents.

“While the Government seems content to blame the unprecedented rise in oil on continuing instability in the Middle East and a stretched global supply system, motorists are being hit hard by price rises, which seem to happen at whim and with less warning.

“New Zealand First has consistently argued that all the monies taken from the petrol motorist should go directly into upgrading and building more roads.

"If all petrol tax was diverted to developing our transport infrastructure, it would easily be possible to manage an annual programme within existing tax structures and help keep price rises to a minimum,” Mr Brown concluded.

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