Road taxes three times greater than spending

The government takes more than three times more on motoring taxes than is spent on roads, latest official figures show.

In 2010, fuel taxes raised around £27 billion for the Treasury, with about £5 billion coming from vehicle excise duty (VED).

But the figures, from the Department for Transport (DfT), also showed that in 2010/11 just under £5.7 billion was spent on local roads and £3.75 billion was spent on national roads.

The 2010/11 statistics also revealed that £7.6 billion was spent on the railways, and £4.9 billion went to local public transport.

Total public spending on transport in the UK, including capital spending by public corporations, was £22.9 billion in 2010/11.

The DfT said VED almost doubled between 1987 and 2010 while the increase in revenue from fuel duty more than tripled.

The department added that, looking at the period 1997 to 2010, the overall cost of motoring (including purchase, petrol and oil and tax and insurance) had risen slowly, although there was a larger increase in 2010, and more slowly than the increase in the cost of living as measured by the retail prices index (RPI).

But when the purchase of a vehicle is removed, motoring running costs have risen faster than the RPI, and public transport fares have risen faster than RPI.

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