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MoT fee rise is ‘vital’ for trade

Jim Punter, chairman of the MoT Trade Forum, says the rise in the maximum fee a garage can charge for carrying out an MoT is vital, especially since the introduction of computerization.

The Government has said that from October, garages can charge up to £50.35 per test, an increase of £6.20.

“Since the introduction of the computerized system last year the time taken to carry out MoTs has increased, therefore, it is vital that garages can charge more,” says Punter. “A technician carrying out the test is now also taking on administrative roles, which were carried out by an assistant under the old system.”

Though the MoT Trade Forum has not yet met to discuss the issues surrounding the consultation document, Punter says there are other points that will warrant a formal response.

“On the whole, I am pleased with the figure that has been finalized, as it is the one that we were hoping for following discussions with the Government,” he says.

The trade forum is due to meet later this month.

The increase in the fee came about as a result of a timing exercise that was carried out earlier this year and reflects the extra time needed to complete a test since the introduction of computerization by VOSA in April 2005.

Stephen Ladyman, transport minister, says: “This is a maximum charge. Many garages will continue to charge less than this.”

In the long-term the Government is considering the idea of completely de-regulating MoT fee levels. Punter believes such a move would be irresponsible. “If the price is fixed then the possibility that a garage could cut corners is discounted or at least reduced,” he says.

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