RMI Petrol has today warned the government that average fuel prices could hit 150ppl by next summer.

In his ‘autumn briefing note’ on fuel and forecourt taxation, which is issued to ministers, their officials and MPs, RMI Petrol chairman Brian Madderson said that with just a small upward adjustment to global oil prices, the UK will be facing average prices of 150ppl for diesel and 145ppl for petrol by next summer unless the government reverses its plans to increase fuel duty.

The government is currently sitting on plans, revealed in the 2011 Budget, to increase fuel duty on January 1 and August 1, 2012. This will increase retail prices by as much as 8ppl and will cost the consumer over £3.5bn a year.

“Government needs to abandon their planned fuel duty increases in 2012 and focus on the faltering UK economy,” said Madderson. “What will such increases do for inflation? What will they do to cash strapped consumers? What will they do for the declining retail sector? What will they do to re-ignite our stagnant economy?

“The Chancellor must be persuaded now that it would be economic suicide to force through these drastic changes to fuel taxation in 2012. His ‘Autumn Statement’ – due on November 29 – provides the last opportunity to cancel the increase due on January 1. This is just a few weeks away. Cancelling the tax duty increase is the only sensible decision that the country urgently awaits.”

Prices at the pump have remained stubbornly high this autumn with current averages of 135ppl for petrol and over 140ppl for diesel.