UK fuel prices have soared amidst rising global oil prices as a result of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. The average price of diesel in the UK reached £1.56 per litre on Thursday 3rd March before soaring even further. Just a week later, the average diesel price hit 170.1p on on 10th March according to Experian Catalist. This represents yet another record high and hauliers have urged the UK government to take action before it’s too late.
The Impact of Record Fuel Prices on Hauliers
The haulage industry typically runs on low profit margins. Rod McKenzie, director for policy and public affairs at the Road Haualge Association (RHA) called it a ‘low margin industry’ with haulage businesses in the UK only making an annual profit of around 3% on average. Speaking to The Independent, he went on to explain this further:
“The weekly profit of a truck may be £80 but the increase in the price of fuel can equate to between £77 to £87 per week per truck, thereby completely wiping out any potential profit.”
McKenzie acknowledged that hauliers could raise prices to protect their profit margins but warned that such action would only add to the increasing financial pressures faced by everyone in the UK. He pointed out that a rise in haulage prices would be bad for businesses, particularly those “whose existence is now threatened.”
Instead, the RHA argues that the goverment is in a position to do something about it and that they need to act now before fuel prices increase even further.
What Can the Government Do?
Amongst their warnings that record fuel prices are wiping out profits, the RHA urged the government to delay the upcoming reform to Red Diesel Tax and postpone the changes for an additional 12 months. The tax changes due to take effect from April 2022 would see hauliers facing increased costs as most red diesel users are taxed at the standard rate. The move is an attempt to reduce harmful emissions but comes at a time when the haulage industry is already facing mounting pressures.
The RHA has also requested a two-year freeze on fuel duty and continues to lobby for changes to address driver shortages affecting the industry. The shortages impacting the supply chain are the result of multiple factors including Brexit, the Covid-19 pandemic, tax reforms and increasing numbers of drivers taking retirement or seeking employment in other industries.
The RHA has drawn attention to the impact of these factors on the haulage industry, along with other issues hauliers face, including lack of appropriate parking facilities and inadequate training for new drivers joining the industry.
They are now urging people both inside and outside of the industry to contact their MPs to request that they take urgent action to support hauliers during this difficult time.
Get In Touch
We understand the pressures many individuals and businesses are facing at this difficult time and would like to reassure our customers that despite the soaring fuel prices in the UK, Hawley Logistics continues to offer the same reliable, cost-effective logistics services we always have.
Wherever your goods need to go and however they need to get there, with our 35 years of experience, Hawley Logistics can be trusted to deliver.
So whether you’re looking for Road Freight, Sea Freight or Air Freight or you’re in need of UK distribution and haulage solutions, don’t hesitate to get in touch. You can call us on 01706 826322 or email us at email@example.com. Alternatively, you can request a call back and one of our team will get back to you asap to discuss your needs and how Hawley Logistics can help.