CQ town among the state’s most expensive place for fuel

EMERALD had the second-most expensive unleaded petrol and diesel across the state for the second month in a row, according to an RACQ report.

RACQ’s June Monthly Fuel Price Report listed Emerald’s average ULP price as 133.9 cents a litre and diesel at 135.1 cents a litre.

Blackwater had the most expensive diesel at 138.8 cents.

State Energy Minister Dr Anthony Lynham last month wrote Australian Competition and Consumer Commission chair Rod Sims asking that retailers “doing the wrong thing” be publicly named and investigated.

Dr Anthony Lynham. Photo: Liam Kidston
Dr Anthony Lynham. Photo: Liam Kidston

This week, Mr Sims said that during April, when the ACCC recorded some of the lowest monthly average fuel prices on record in Australia’s five largest cities, prices in some regional locations nevertheless stood tall.

“Average prices in Cloncurry, Mount Isa, Emerald, Cunnamulla and Forbes only fell by around 20 cpl or less between January and May and have not changed much since then,” he said.

“Retailers should share the savings from lower global oil prices with drivers. Excessive pricing which harms local communities, while not illegal, has been called out by the ACCC and community leaders.”

ACCC Chair Rod Sims. Photo: Zak Simmonds
ACCC Chair Rod Sims. Photo: Zak Simmonds

An ACCC spokesman said today that the commission understood Emerald residents were “upset at paying more than their counterparts in other regional areas”.

“The ACCC monitors fuel prices in all capital cities and around 190 regional locations, and we call out excessive price increases if they are seen to occur,” he said.

He cited a “lack of vigorous and effective competition” as a reason for higher prices in some areas.

Dr Lynham said the State Government has “done what we can on fuel prices” and that drivers should report anti-competitive behaviour to the ACCC.

“We’ve required servos to report their up-to-date prices, and that data is being made freely available to web and app developers.

“That means Queensland drivers now have 11 websites and apps to find the cheapest servo in town.

“I encourage motorists to use their buying power and spend their money with servos who are doing the right thing.”