High petrol pump prices questioned

A Mayo politician has questioned the high price of petrol at the pumps despite fast falling crude oil prices.

Dara Calleary, the Fianna Fa?il spokesperson on jobs, enterprise and innovation, is now calling on the newly established Competition and Consumer Protection Commission to look at the issue.

“Customers will be aware that crude oil prices have fallen by 50 per cent since June of this year,” said Deputy Calleary.

“However, from looking at the AA website, it can be seen that diesel prices have fallen from an average of 146.8c a litre in June to around 130c now, a drop of 11 per cent. Petrol has fallen by about 10 per cent over the same period. The rate at which reductions have been passed on can be described as tardy at best,” he said.

Deputy Calleary said arguments from petrol retailers that fixed taxes make up a considerable proportion of the cost of petrol and diesel do not adequately explain the delay in falling crude oil prices being passed on to customers.

“Consumers will be left with the nagging feeling that prices tend to go up much faster than they fall,” he pointed out.

“Motorists, electricity customers and consumers generally should be reaping the benefits of these falling oil prices. However, markets often appear to work against the interests of consumers.

“The Competition and Consumer Protection Commission can play a role by examining the validity of arguments around the continuing high prices. In so doing, it can provide reassurance to motorists that there is a fair and functioning market,” stated Deputy Calleary.

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