Oil Price surge: Fears of ‘de-facto lockdown’ soar as petrol prices refuse to fall | Politics | News

However, the lack of a breakthrough and continued fighting seems to have poured cold water on this optimistic assessment.

The conflict in Ukraine is crucial for investors not just because Russia is a major oil producer but because of the presence of oil pipelines to Western Europe in Ukraine and concerns over supply.

It comes as a senior Conservative MP has raised concerns that Britain may be forced into a “de facto lockdown” due to rising petrol prices.

Robert Halfon has urged Transport Secretary Grant Shapps to convince Chancellor Rishi Sunak to help drivers with the rapidly increasing petrol prices exacerbated by the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Speaking at Transport Questions in the House of Commons, Mr Halfon suggested that the situation could be so serious that people may not be able to commute to work and parents may not be able to take their children to school.

He said: “I thank my right honorable friend for what the Government has done on the fuel duty freeze.

“But the fact is that motorists are paying £ 1.60 or more for their petrol and diesel and we are heading for a de facto lockdown where parents cannot afford to take their kids to school and workers cannot afford to commute by car and have to stay at home. “

In response Mr Shapps pointed out that fuel duty had been frozen for the last 12 years.

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However, he promised to “further conversations” with Mr Sunak but that the “next measures” would be a decision for the Chancellor.

As the price of oil directly affects petrol prices, experts were expecting prices at the pump to fall as although wholesale prices are high, they have reduced significantly since reaching a record $ 139 per barrel on March 8.

However, according to The i, dozens of petrol stations across the UK charged at least £ 2 per liter meaning the cost to fill up a typical family car now comes to £ 110.

The publication also reported prices at the pump are likely to increase by at least 10 pence per liter in some cases.

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RAC fuel spokesman, Simon Williams told The i, drivers “badly need a break from these relentless daily rises”.

He said retailers will “soon start to pass on recent reductions in the price of wholesale fuel” and will be looking to Rishi Sunak to “end their misery” by cutting VAT or fuel duty.

Aaron Bell, the Conservative MP for the Red Wall seat of Newcastle-under-Lyme, also called on ministers to help “so people in my constituency can fill up and go to work”.

Louise Haigh, the shadow transport secretary, said her constituents “struggle to make decisions over which basic essentials to cut” as they are affected by the wider cost of living crisis.

In an attempt to ease pressure on households, the Government is offering 28million homes a £ 350 discount from October.

Ministers have rejected the idea proposed by some backbench Tories to cut fuel duty by 1p.

They argue this would do little to help with rising prices as the West attempts to move away from its dependence on Russian energy supplies.

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