Small businesses are struggling with increases in fuel duty and many will have to lay off staff, freeze wages and reduce investment in new products as a result, according to a new survey by the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB).
In a poll of more than 400 small firms, nine in ten said the fuel duty hike at the beginning of the year will cost them up to £2,000 over the next six months.
Indeed, more than three quarters of those questioned said their profitability will be reduced as a result of the tax rise.
Asked what they will do if fuel costs continue to rise, six in ten said they will be forced to increase their prices, while one in ten will have to make redundancies.
In response to the survey, the FSB called on the government to put in place a fuel duty stabiliser and to halt all future increases until such a policy is introduced.
One way that companies could save money in their transport costs is by ensuring they have a good deal on their van insurance cover.