The Royal Automobile Club of Queensland (RACQ) says fuel prices in south-east Queensland are set to hit a four-year high.
The state’s motoring body has warned drivers in the region to “prepare for hip-pocket pain in the coming days”.
RACQ spokesperson Lucinda Ross says about one in ten of Brisbane’s service stations have increased their price of unleaded petrol to 162.9 cents per litre (cpl). If this trend continues, she claims, it could lead to the highest average price for the city since July 2014.
‘Taken advantage of’
“Unfortunately, with the hike going the way it is, and many servos upping their prices to 162.9cpl, we think we could soon see the highest average daily price we’ve had in more than four years,” Ms Ross said.
“And, not surprisingly, we’ve again seen the major fuel companies – BP, Coles, Caltex and Woolworths – be the first to hike their prices to these outrageous levels.
“It’s frustrating drivers in Brisbane are being taken advantage of. They’re already paying more for fuel than motorists in most of the other large Australian capitals.”
Ms Ross says she acknowledges that global oil prices have climbed in recent months. But she claims there’s no justification for price rises of this magnitude.
“At 162.9cpl, servos are taking retail margins of about 23cpl,” she said. “While this is consistent with recent price hikes, fuel-company margins in Brisbane are much higher than in the other large capitals.”
Relief on the way?
But Australasian Convenience and Petroleum Marketers Association (ACAPMA) CEO Mark McKenzie says this price-cycle peak is merely making up for discounts over the past three weeks.
“It’s almost like having a sale, then you go to recover the discounts that you’ve actually offered as you pack into the front of the petrol price cycle,” Mr McKenzie told TheNewDaily.com.au. But he also hinted that relief may be on the way.
“We should start to steady out in terms of supply and production globally, which should at least start to have a moderating effect on petrol prices across the region,” Mr McKenzie said.
‘Fill up the tank’
But the RACQ’s Ms Ross has warned Queensland motorists not to wait. “We’re urging motorists across the south east to get in and buy without delay,” she said.
“If you spot ULP for 142cpl or less, fill up the tank. We don’t know how long it’ll be before prices come back down again.”