Hard-pressed motorists are to face further hikes in fuel prices in the coming months, it has been announced.
Chancellor Alistair Darling announced in Wednesday's budget that fuel duty would increase by 2p a litre in September and there would be further rises of 1p a litre for the next four Aprils.
Petrol prices are now around 95p at the pumps, having previously slipped below the 90p a litre, with this month's planned Government fuel duty rise adding 2.12p a litre on prices.
RAC motoring strategist Adrian Tink said: "Today's announcement is another brutal blow for motorists who have already witnessed a decade of non-stop increases and price rises. It's time for the Government to stop treating motorists' pockets as a bottomless pit of money and recognise their right to drive at a fair, affordable price.
"We urge the Government to abandon its preoccupation with overtaxing motorists and instead focus on providing them with a safe, reliable, efficient road network that all concerned can be proud of.
"With the Government confirming that VAT will remain at 15% until December, we expect the fuel duty hike that offset this benefit to motorists will be reversed."