Greengates Builders Merchants Accrington, Lancashire asks what do you think about petrol prices!
Ministers have indicated that they believe motorists are being “ripped off at the petrol pump” ahead of an official report into whether consumers are being treated fairly.
Baroness Verma, an energy minister, said that the Government was looking at how petrol companies can be “encouraged” to pass on falls in the oil price to motorists.
Motoring groups have repeatedly complained that petrol stations appear to put up pump prices quickly following a rise in the crude oil price – but delay passing on reductions.
The Office of Fair Trading (OFT), the consumer regulator, will tomorrow publish the interim findings of a review of the petrol and diesel market across Britain.
There is growing speculation that the OFT will now launch a full inquiry to establish whether prices are being manipulated after studying evidence suggesting this may be the case.
Speaking in the House of Lords, Baroness Verma said that reports of another round of petrol price increases were “worrying”.
She added: “Perhaps we should look at how we can encourage retailers to pass down a drop in price if it comes through the crude oil route.
“However, the Office of Fair Trading is looking at retail pricing and at how reductions in price are passed down. We hope to be able to respond once we have viewed the report.”
Ministers have previously voiced concerns over petrol price movements and suggested that the industry introduce a voluntary code of conduct to reassure consumers.
The AA has previously described petrol pump prices as operating in a “blurred world”.
The cost of petrol and diesel has become a major concern for countries around the world, and similar investigations into price movements have been launched in Germany, Spain and Australia.
Ministers have already delayed or scrapped a series of fuel duty rises following protests over the costs of petrol from MPs and motorists.
“We think it would be fairer to pass on the reductions in the cost of fuel as quickly as the rise when it goes up” says Greengates Builders Merchants Accrington, Lancashire.