BUDGET 2011: LeasePlan welcomes changes
David Brennan, managing director, LeasePlan UK, said:
'LeasePlan welcomes the Budget, which I believe points the economy in the right direction towards recovery, in particular the accelerated lowering of corporation tax and initiatives to encourage enterprise.
'Our initial assessment of the package announced today suggests the Government has listened to the needs of motorists and increasingly understands that business travel is a necessity, not a luxury, and plays a vital role in keeping the economy moving.
'LeasePlan welcomes the Chancellor’s decision to cut fuel duty by 1 pence per litre as an important first step in addressing the soaring cost of motoring. Similarly, the abolition of the fuel duty escalator and its replacement by a ‘fair fuel stabiliser’ is indeed fairer to motorists.
'Until now, many fleet managers had been in limbo, as BiK tax rates were only confirmed until 2012/13. With the announcement that the Government will freeze company car tax for cars emitting less than 95g/km from April 2013 and increase tax for carbon dioxide emissions between 95g/km and 219g/km by 1%, fleet managers will now be able to plan long-term strategies that promote environmentally-friendly policies. This can only be a good thing that will accelerate the take-up of low carbon vehicles.
'This environmental approach is further complemented by the announcement that Private Fuel Benefit in Kind charge is being increased. Another sign that the Government is actively trying to dissuade employees from receipt of this "benefit" viewed as encouraging unnecessary travel.
'The plan announced to merge income tax and National Insurance is potentially a positive step to simplify taxation but, as part of the consultation process, there needs to be an extensive review of how this would impact BiK rates.
'Drivers will be cheered by the earmarking of £100 million for potholes but this is likely to be a drop in the ocean…anybody who has driven recently knows the roads are littered with them after a severe winter.
'Overall the picture is more positive today for business drivers and their employers, and welcome relief after the pain of rising pump prices.'