I think as soon as the spring, our industry, as well as the UK, could be approaching something on what could be described as crisis levels.
Fuel as seen a rather large spike again in prices are we are edging very close indeed to record petrol and diesel prices. We may already be there and past that mark in certain areas. So what is causing this latest spike in fuel? Well, sterling has taken a battering since the start of the new year as the highly predicted currency wars start to take hold. Problem is, every economist has decided that the pound will fair very badly as we’re starting to see the effects as the £ v $ rate has dropped 12 cents since the new year. This in turn has had a sharp effect on what we pay at the pumps as oil is bought by the barrel in dollars.
On top of that, the general price of oil has edged up until recently. Long term, non of these situations look like they’re going to get any better, especially the state of our currency. But every time fuel spikes like this, it immediately puts added strain on businesses that have delivery vans and company vehicles. The impact is right away and it is something that puts more pressure on budgets and cash flow, especially if that business as a large fleet.
Our industry is no different and every time fuel goes up, so does the cost to that person or business. Personally, I think it is disgusting that this issue has been allowed to carry on bubbling under the surface. Every time a budget statement comes along, Osbourne announces gleefully that he’s not adding that poxy couple of pence extra tax this time round and he thinks that’s enough!
Plain and simple, the government hasn’t and isn’t doing enough about the rising fuel price issue. At some point, and I think very much sooner rather than later, there is going to be a tipping point where significantly more people and companies crumble under financial pressure due to the rising cost of fuel.
We as a country need to speak up loudly and pressure this government to do more and quickly. If it means protests like in 2000, if it means it will get results, then that is something I would back. May not be that popular a move, but if it gets results then why not?!