A fuel price rise has been passed on faster than the decrease last year, according to the RAA.

A recent jump has seen some local service stations put their prices up by as much as five cents. Some unleaded fuel prices now match diesel prices.

RAA Senior Analyst Chris West said it had been caused by a rise in oil prices during February.

“People may be shocked with the increase,” Mr West said.

“But there has been an increase in oil prices that some people are not aware of. The refinery margin has also pushed the price up.”

But he said the pricing seemed to be accurate.

“Now some retailers are offering 134.9 cents per litre which is also the same as Ceduna. As such, it is on par,” he said.

“I think there is concern that local retailers are trying to close the margin by passing on the market increases.

“It seems they have passed on the increase quickly.

“It’s not every day you see a five cent jump in fuel prices.

“We have seen a number of towns jump from three cents to 13 cents in a short time frame.”

Mr West predicted the price would stabilize.

“At this stage the cost price will be stable. It may fall a little bit to reflect the cost price change.

“We would expect prices in Broken Hill to be comparable to cost prices.

“If it increases or decreases by two cents, you would expect that to reach the pump in a normal time frame.

“Every month, the Broken Hill prices are assessed. The RAA will release the prices for the month March to be released in early April.

“The retailers watch the prices and are concerned about them. They are worried they are missing out on savings.

“Retailers profit where they can. Fuel prices should be scrutinized so they are as transparent as possible.

“The NRMA is also watching, so any discrepancies will be picked up.

“At this point the increases appear to be aligned, but they flow through at a quicker rate than the reduction did late last year.”

A recent report by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission showed that country motorists had not been given the falling prices at the same rate or speed as Adelaide motorists.

“The ACCC will look at the fuel price situation,” Mr West said. “They may look to other country towns and Broken Hill could be part of the mix.”

Extracted in full from the Barrier Daily Truth.