Simon Roberts, Sainsbury's CEO

Source: Sainsbury’s

Sainsbury’s CEO Simon Roberts said the grocer was committed to helping customers through the cost of living crisis

Supermarkets are cutting fuel prices for motorists from today, 23 March, following the Chancellor’s fuel duty cut announcement.

Sainsbury’s, Asda and Morrisons have all said they will pass on the price reductions to customers from this evening. It folllows Rishi Sunak’s Spring Statement, in which he said the government would go ahead with a fuel duty cut until March next year following weeks of record high prices at the pumps.

Sunak announced several measures to combat the cost of living crisis in his Spring Statement, including a 5p per litre reduction on fuel and removal of VAT from energy efficiency home improvements.

“We understand that the cost of living is a real challenge for many households and we are committed to helping our customers as much as we can,” said Sainsbury’s CEO Simon Roberts.

“We welcome the Chancellor’s announcement today which will save motorists money and we are passing the cut on fuel duty to our customers at the pumps across every single one of our 315 forecourts from tonight.”

While the supermarket is still selling through stock it purchased while the higher fuel duty was in effect, it said it would lower prices from 23 March so customers “can benefit from the Chancellor’s announcement sooner”.

All three grocers said they were going to cut the price of a litre by 6p, which includes a 1p reduction in VAT. Asda said motorists would see unleaded move back below 160p per litre and diesel to 170p per litre following the reductions.

According to the Treasury, the fuel duty cut will save motorists around £2.4bn in the next year.

However, environmental campaigners have slammed the Chancellor’s move, claiming it will “largely benefit wealthier households who tend to have bigger vehicles and drive more”.

“The priority should have been to follow the lead of New Zealand by reducing the price of public transport and providing a more affordable alternative to driving,” said Friends of the Earth’s head of policy Mike Childs.

“Plans to end our dependency on increasingly costly fossil fuels to get around must be accelerated. Public transport must be rapidly expanded and made cheaper to encourage more people to leave the car at home, with particular focus on our woefully inadequate rural bus services.”

Greenpeace UK policy director Dr Doug Parr said the fuel duty cut “gives more money back to the driver of an expensive gas-guzzling SUV than the average punter”.

“It doesn’t provide much help at all to the poorest fifth of the population, over half of whom don’t even have a car.

“At a time when the UK needs to slash oil from all sources for security purposes, the Chancellor should only cut fuel duty if he can make an equivalent cut to the costs of public transport which offers real support for those facing this cost of living crisis.”