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The great petrol lie

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274/91 4 December 1991


Mr Hawke is persisting with the lie that motorists will pay- trebled registration charges when the Coalition abolishes fuel excise.

He is wrong and he knows he is wrong.

I repeat my statement of 27 November:

"There will be no extra Commonwealth fuel-based road user charges for ordinary motorists; the 7 cents a litre raised by the GST functions as a user charge.

Down the track, we want to see a form of road user charge for commercial vehicles, especially heavy transport. But this will not - repeat not - take the form of a fuel tax. "

The 7 cents a litre raised by the GST is adequate to cover the cost of private motorists share of the Federal road building program.

Mr Hawke even goes to the ridiculous extent of suggesting that the Coalition will treble registration charges for ordinary motorists when in fact the Commonwealth doesn't set registration charges.

Our position is clear enough for Mr Hawke to understand.

Yet he continues to deliberately misrepresent the Coalition's policy. He knows he cannot damage it through objective analysis so he is trying to destroy it through a scare campaign based on lies. This might work if he had any credibility left.

But a man who lied to the Australian people and to his own Deputy cannot expect to be believed.