Media Release, 20 December 2015

Minister for Innovation and Better Regulation Victor Dominello has today announced reforms to the state’s biofuels mandate to put downward pressure on E10 prices, increase compliance among fuel companies and boost transparency in the market.

Mr Dominello said the reforms will help to ensure that E10 is sold at a competitive price with IPART to regulate the wholesale price of ethanol and monitor retail prices to ensure reductions are being passed through to consumers.

“The NSW Government is committed to creating a competitive biofuels industry in which E10 is a cheap and attractive option for motorists, while maintaining choice among other regular and premium unleaded fuels,” he said.

“Ethanol is an environmentally sustainable source of fuel and has many benefits including reducing our reliance on foreign fuel imports, and supporting regional jobs.

“Strong ethanol fuel industries exist in 59 jurisdictions overseas including the US, Canada, France, Japan and Brazil. In all these countries, government mandates have been used to boost competition and drive down the price of fuel at the bowser.

“E10 has the potential to be the most cost effective fuel at the bowser in NSW, but to achieve this we need the right policy settings.”

The reforms include:

  • Empowering IPART to regulate the wholesale price of ethanol;
  • Extending the mandate to service stations which sell three or more types of automotive fuel and enforcing it at the retail level;
  • Providing exemptions to SMEs where appropriate;
  • Introducing objective measures to determine ‘reasonable steps’ under the exemptions regime;
  • Amending the Biofuels Act 2007 following industry consultations in early 2016;
  • Establishing an online fuel price board that will require all service station operators to report their current retail fuel prices in real-time; and
  • Implementing an education campaign to inform consumers of the benefits of ethanol and dispel the myths.

Further information about the biofuels mandate, including IPART’s recent reports, is available at www.fairtrading.nsw.gov.au.

Extracted in full from NSW Government.

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