THE UK government has submitted a list of seven new areas, most of them in Scotland, to the European Commission to be considered for inclusion in the fuel duty discount scheme.
The scheme, which currently offers payback of of up to 5p a litre to retailers who give the discount to consumers, has been running in the Scottish islands and the Scilly Isles for some time,
The latest application covers postal areas in Strathcarron, Ullapool, Lairg, Mallaig, Halkirk and Oban as well as Hexham in Northumberland. Applications already exist for locations in the Highlands, Argyll, Cumbria, Devon and North Yorkshire.
A decision from the Commission is expected later this year.
A report published by the Treasury in October last year found that ‘overall…the policy is meeting its objective’.
Brian Madderson, chairman of the Petrol Retailers Association, said: “One of the criteria is that the filling station has to be at least 100 miles away from the nearest refinery.
“This seems a bit harsh and I did query that with the Treasury, but they did say that this is what the original scheme specified and that they’ve got to continue with that.
“At this moment there is little we can do but wait and see if they come forward with details of other areas that might be considered for the scheme.”