Transport: PM `will talk to hauliers'

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The Independent Online
THE PRIME Minister yesterday made it clear he would listen to the complaints from road hauliers who are campaigning against the Budget increases in duty on diesel fuel.

With the road haulage industry threatening to move its offices to the Continent to pay lower fuel duties, Tony Blair assured the lorry companies he understood the problems of the industry.

In clashes with William Hague, the Tory leader, Mr Blair said the biggest increases in fuel duty had been under the Tories. But the Prime Minister's spokesman later confirmed the Government was ready to listen to the protests.

"The Government can do all sorts of things. The first thing we can do is listen to what people say."

The spokesman reaffirmed the Government's policy to increase fuel duty over the Parliament to help meet Britain's targets on reducing pollution.