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Autumn statement 2016: what does it mean for drivers?

Philip Hammond's first Autumn statement as Chancellor includes plans to repair roads and tackle fraudulent whiplash claims. We explain what else you need to know

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Philip Hammond

In today's Autumn statement, the first with Philip Hammond as Chancellor, the Government has announced that fuel duty will be frozen for the seventh year running. Here's what else you might have missed.

What does the Autumn statement mean for me?

Earlier this month, the Government announced it would be cracking down on fraudulent whiplash claims by putting more stringent checks in place before a claim can be made. If these new measures are successfully implemented, car insurance prices for British motorists could fall by as much as Β£40 per person. However, despite this saving, insurance premium tax will rise from 10% to 12%, meaning that some of that Β£40 saving will not be passed on to drivers.

Another heavily trailed promise ahead of the budget was for a Β£1.3 billion package for improving and maintaining Britain's roads, with specific focus on road repairs and reducing traffic bottlenecks, as well as tackling some of the UK's worst potholes. Potholes, which become much more prevalent in winter - are estimated to cause 1 in 10 mechanical failures on cars in the UK, costing drivers around Β£370 million in repair bills collectively each year.

Chancellor Hammond said he deliberately kept the statement from resembling a list of projects, but did outline several ways in which motorists would benefit when making the statement.

The first was that that Β£1.1bn would be allocated to local transport networks in England, and a further Β£220m to address local traffic pinch points on 'strategic roads'. This comes is part of the aforementioned Β£1.3bn package of road investment.

Low-emissions vehicles will receive Β£390m of investment , creating funding for more electric vehicle (EV) chargers and "building our competitive advantage in low-emissions vehicles and the development of connected, autonomous vehicles", while a "100% of first year capital allowance on the installation of EV charging points" was also announced.

Hammond confirmed that the Government will increase its investment into science and technology innovation, something that should positively impact the UK's automotive and engineering industries. The Government has already struck a deal with UK-based car manufacturers to limit potential damage caused by Brexit to the industry.

While making his Autumn statement, the Chancellor said the British public's decision to leave the European Union (EU) - which was made five months ago to the day - would "change the course of British history." He said the Government has chosen to "prioritise additional high-value investment, specifcially in infastructure and innovation."

Read more – What does the EU referendum result mean for car buyers?

Read more – How to reduce your fuel bills


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