A fuel tax (also known as a petrol tax, gasoline tax, gas tax or fuel duty) is a sales tax imposed on the sale of fuel. In most countries, the fuel tax imposed on fuels which are intended for transportation. Fuels used to power agricultural vehicles, and/or home heating oil which is similar to diesel are taxed at a different, usually lower, rate.
In the United States, the fuel tax receipts are often dedicated or hypothecated to transportation projects so that the fuel tax is considered by many a user fee. In other countries, the fuel tax is a source of general revenue.
In the People's Republic of China, the fuel tax has been a very contentious issue. Efforts by the State Council to institute a fuel tax in order to finance the National Trunk Highway System have run into strong opposition from the National People's Congress, largely out of concern for its impact on farmers. This has been one of the uncommon instances in which the legislature has asserted its authority.