The Queensland government has announced a two-year trial of fuel-price monitoring to take effect in the state as soon as possible.
As part of the trial, all fuel retailers in the state will be required to collate and publish their latest prices online, on their own websites and their own apps, within 15 minutes of any change.
A working group comprising industry stakeholders, including the motoring body RACQ, will be established to oversee the implementation of the monitoring system.
Energy Minister Dr Anthony Lynham says the two-year trial will ensure more current data is available to motorists, enabling them to compare pricing at different sites, and small independent retailers will not be disadvantaged.
“The system will be required to have in-built safeguards against retailers’ price fixing and not inflict unnecessary red tape,” he said.
RACQ spokesman Paul Turner welcomed the announcement, saying motorists in Queensland who paid some of the highest prices for fuel in the country would be empowered with the information they needed before filling the tank.
“Today’s announcement means every Queensland driver will be able to find out the price of fuel at every servo, every 15 minutes – it’s a huge win,” he said.
“Lower fuel prices start with increased competition, but you can only take advantage of the cheapest prices if you know where to go – this real-time system will deliver that to motorists.”
7-Eleven customers in Queensland are already accessing this information through the 7-Eleven fuel app, and are claimed collectively to have saved almost $1.3 million in the two years since the app was launched.
“The 7-Eleven fuel app provides consumers with near-to-real-time data on fuel prices at all 7-Eleven stores across Queensland and nationally,” a spokesperson said.
“More than 19 million best-local-price searches have been completed nationally, empowering consumers to make informed choices about buying fuel.”
The 7-Eleven fuel app also lets registered users lock in 7-Eleven’s best local price, then redeem it at any 7-Eleven store Australia-wide within the following seven days.
Since its launch, more than one million Australians are claimed to have downloaded the app, collectively saving more than $5 million on fuel purchases. Queenslanders have locked in prices more than 300,000 times, with a claimed average saving of 11.3 cents per litre.