Proposed duty rises for diesel and unleaded petrol are facing the axe despite last-minute lobbying by policy secretaries. In a breakfast meeting, Secretary for Treasury Kwong Ki-chi yesterday urged eight independent provisional legislators to support the duty increase, which will be put to the vote this afternoon. Financial Secretary Donald Tsang Yam-kuen also lobbied members for support. However, Miriam Lau Kin-yee, of the Liberal Party, said she had not been persuaded. 'We will continue to oppose all increases in fuel and methyl alcohol,' she said. 'The principle is clear - the Government is freezing its charges in response to the economic situation and there should not be selective implementation.' The Dutiable Commodities (Amendment) Bill 1998 seeks to raise duties on tobacco, fuel and methyl alcohol by six per cent. Mr Tsang said last week that if the proposed increases were not passed, the Government's ability to make revenue concessions in future budgets would be restricted. Law Cheung-kwok, vice-chairman of the Association for Democracy and People's Livelihood, said the party would vote against all fuel duty increases, but would support the rise for methyl alcohol. The convenor of the breakfast meeting, Eric Li Ka-cheung, said the legislators indicated they would oppose the increases in diesel and unleaded petrol tax. 'The environmental reasons for these increases are not strong and considering the livelihood factor, we tend not to support the Government's proposals,' Mr Li said. However, he said most of the members present would support the six per cent rise in duties for aircraft fuel, leaded petrol and methyl alcohol.