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Osborne may 'override' duty rise

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George Osborne has given hope to millions of drivers by revealing that he is considering scrapping the 1p increase in fuel duty due to come into effect in April.

The Chancellor told the BBC WM radio that the Government was looking at "overriding" the planned duty hike, a move that would be welcomed by motorists who are already struggling with rising car insurance premiums and fuel costs.

There has been growing pressure on the Government to have a rethink on the planned rise, at a time when the cost of a litre of unleaded has reached nearly £1.30 after global oil prices and VAT increases.

Fuel duty already costs 58.95p for every litre.

In last year's Budget, Labour chancellor Alistair Darling announced that fuel duty would be raised by a further 1p this April.

However, his successor Mr Osborne seemed to indicate that any relief for motorists may be announced in his March 23 Budget.

Mr Osborne also said ministers were considering putting a fuel stabiliser in place, so "the Government steps in to try to protect people from the effects" of volatility at the pumps by reducing the level of duty as oil prices go up and increasing it as they drop.

© Press Association 2011