Diesel prices dropped to below 99c in January. This photo of the Miriam Vale Star Roadhouse was taken on January 25.
Diesel prices dropped to below 99c in January. This photo of the Miriam Vale Star Roadhouse was taken on January 25. Declan Cooley

More scrutiny needed for Qld petrol prices

THE Palaszczuk Government's Petrol price Summit on Wednesday has ended with calls for an investigation into the cost of petrol in Queensland.

The Energy Minister Mark Baily has asked the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission to launch the investigation after the ACCC confirmed Queenslanders were paying more for fuel.

"The ACCC has the tools and the expertise, such as their compulsory information gathering powers, to bring real scrutiny to bear on the Queensland market and shine a light on what are higher margins than other states," Mr Baily said.

Mr Baily said regional areas had been slow to decrease their petrol prices and that motorists had not been getting the full benefit of "the lowest international oil prices we've seen in 10 years".

The cost of oil is $34.62 a barrel and to put this in perspective, halfway through 2014 a barrel of oil was going for more than $100.

As of yesterday the RACQ fair fuel price index listed the price of diesel in Gladstone as "fair", at an average of $1.04 a litre, however it deemed the price of unleaded fuel "high", at an average of $109.7.

Snapshot: compare petrol prices across Gladstone yesterday

 

 

The owner of the Star Roadhouse at Miriam Vale, Deb Chapman, said she would welcome greater scrutiny over petrol prices.

"It would keep everyone honest and would be beneficial for customers," she said.

"I've got nothing to hide because I've got a [pricing] structure that I stick to.

"If the cost goes down then it comes down for my customers and if it goes up then so do my prices," Ms Chapman said.

But for Ben Benedetto, who owns the Shell 78 on Toolooa St, he didn't think an ACCC investigation would bring about much change.

"They've been investigating for the last 20 years and nothing has ever changed," he said.

"We're only the little guys.

"We pay the terminal gate price plus the cost of freight and that's how we get our prices," he said.

The terminal gate price of fuel for Shell in Gladstone was $1.08 for unleaded fuel and $0.93 for diesel.