A key ally of Boris Johnson has tried to douse claims he could cut fuel duty in an emergency Budget.

A top source told multiple Sunday newspapers the Prime Minister would cut the rate - frozen for nine years - this Autumn.

It fuelled speculation the Prime Minister is preparing to call a snap election.

But Transport Secretary Grant Shapps told Sky News: “There hasn’t been an announcement about fuel.

“I don’t think it necessarily means anything at all.”

“I don’t think it necessarily means anything at all," said Grant Shapps

Fuel duty has been frozen by the Government for nine consecutive years and stands at 57.95 pence per litre for petrol and diesel.

The cut would form part of an emergency budget by Chancellor Sajid Javid and could pave the way for a general election in October, The Sunday Times said.

But it would likely cost billions in taxes elsewhere to people not lucky, wealthy or car-focused enough to own a vehicle.

Back in 2017, freezing fuel duty for the seventh year in a row - a big win to Tory grassroots - will cost £830m in one year alone.

A source told the Mail on Sunday that the move would send "a clear message that the Prime Minister is fully behind business in the run-up to Brexit ".

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The reported plans follow a series of funding pledges by Mr Johnson since he took over the top job, including a boost for left-behind towns and extra resources for crime-fighting, which have fuelled speculation the PM is keeping his options open for a snap general election.

According to the latest forecast by the Office for Budget Responsibility, fuel duty is expected to raise £28.4 billion in 2019-20.

That is equivalent to £1,000 for every household in Britain.

Earlier this month, a right-wing think tank said fuel duty should be increased to tackle air pollution in the UK.

Bright Blue said Britain's departure from the EU provided an opportunity to raise air pollution standards and suggested removing the existing freeze on fuel duty.