It’s no secret that the world is experiencing some of the cheapest fuel prices its seen in the last decade and the glut in fuel across the world is helping maintain more affordable prices per litre everywhere. However, there are still some mischievous businesses taking advantage of vulnerable customers. Falling fuel prices should be synonymous across the country and those companies that don’t reduce their prices should be held responsible for bad business practice.
Unfortunately, Queensland across the board has been hit by the worst by these bad practices with fuel at certain bowsers costing more than $1.20 per litre, however within Brisbane city itself customers are enjoying the lowest fuel prices in the last 10 years. If you would like to avoid the higher prices, these are the locations to steer clear of and the ones you can smile about for getting their comeuppance.
Whenever or not there is dubious behaviour in the market, you can rest assured that the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) will get involved at some point and that’s certainly the case here. Customers are fed up so will be pleased to know that there's an investigation currently underway by the ACCC.
Prices for unleaded fuel on the Gold Coast last week sat at around $0.95 cents per litre according to data from Compare the Market. To buy the very same fuel in Brisbane you would have to pay 121.6 cents, so you can understand the frustration that some motorists would be feeling, especially as we all have access to the same data.
Motorists in Ipswich paid 97.5 cents per litre, whilst over in Goondiwindi near the NSW border and in Emerald in central highlands, the unleaded price for fuel sat at 121.5 cents and 128.3 cents per litre respectively. Those living out in the outback of Queensland town of Cannamulla on Friday last week were exposed to even greater prices, reaching as high as 141.4 cents at the pump.
This terrible business behaviour that is clearly taking larger profits than necessary from needy customers has resulted in the Main Roads Minister, Mark Bailey to call upon the federal government to provide resources to the ACCC to allow them to set up an enquiry into the scandal.
Bailey mentioned that similar probes from the ACCC had resulted in fuel stations dropping their prices previously in NSW, Tasmania and the Northern Territory. What’s even more frustrating is the fact that the resources of the ACCC have not been called upon earlier to resolve this issue for the customers. It’s a shame that it's been allowed to get to the point where the federal government has had to make the call to bring in the ACCC to tackle the Queensland fuel market.
The ACCC will begin by focusing its attack on the area of Cairns where the price of fuel has constantly been higher than the rest of the country for some time. Sydney and Melbourne customers have been experiencing fairer prices which on average are two-three cents lower per litre than Queensland stations.
We are still a while away until fuel prices across the country become transparent, which is one way the government believes competition will be more of a level playing field. This is something that the ACCC have already tackled with its victory over the real time petrol price battle with the major fuel companies in Australia. Their source of information will come from a service company called Informed Sources, and the public can apparently expect access to this data by mid 2016.