PRESSURE is growing on Chancellor Rishi Sunak to do something more to combat the rise in fuel prices, and with good reason.

A tank of petrol now costs £100, of which £46 goes straight to the Government.

On a litre of fuel that costs £1.80, 53p is fuel duty and 30p is VAT, which is charged at 20 per cent. In fact, you pay VAT on the fuel duty, so you are doubly taxed.

So as the price of fuel goes up, the Government receives more tax – one estimate says it is getting £4.4m extra a day.

Mr Sunak, though, says this isn’t a “wind-fuel” for the Government as across the whole economy, people are spending less on other goods because so much of their money is going on fuel.

But that’s the problem: as the price of fuel bites, people are cutting out their discretionary journeys and so are not spending when they get there. Cutting fuel tax would counter inflation and give people more money to spend on other goods.

There is an extremely important green argument for taxing fuel, but it would take a substantial cut in tax to take us back to a level that was considered environmentally acceptable only a month ago.

And it is clear now that the high price of fuel is doing unacceptable damage in other ways, driving businesses to the wall and even driving carers off the road.

We are heading for an economically turbulent time. The Government needs to continue to act promptly to keep us on the right roads.