Likely car tax rise delay welcomed

An environmental campaign group has welcomed a likely postponement of road tax increases for cars bought before 2006.

All cars that have been on the road since 2001 were due to face rises in vehicle excise duty (VED) from 2009 following changes announced in the last Budget.

However, next week's pre-Budget report is expected to announced that the retrospective emissions-based tax will be postponed.

Andrew Davis, director of the Environmental Transport Association (ETA), said: "Higher-polluting cars should face some form of punitive taxation, but it is vital that green taxes are seen as well thought through and fair - it's questionable whether such a sharply-increased retrospective tax will ever be seen in that way."

Almost 70% of Britain's 26 million drivers would have been affected by the VED changes, the retrospective aspect of which had infuriated MPs of all parties.

The ETA believes that an equitable alternative to road tax would be national road user charging, which would cut congestion and help reduce carbon emissions.

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