Claims by the Palaszczuk government that Queenslanders will benefit from its decision to make mandatory fuel price reporting permanent is an insult to regional residents, according to the LNP’s western Queensland spokesman Lachlan Millar.

He said that not only did inland fuel consumers not have access to wide retail fuel competition to make this claim a reality, the price reporting app clearly showed how ripped off they were.

Energy Minister Mick de Brenni said the government was delivering permanent fuel price reporting to save Queenslanders money as part of its economic recovery plan.

“At the touch of a button drivers can download an app to search for the cheapest fuel from the state’s over 1550 servos reporting their prices, and it’s here to stay,” he said.

“Under the mandatory laws these servos publish their fuel prices within 30 minutes, so drivers can be confident of the best deal by comparing prices through a number of apps.

“Whether it’s off-roading on Straddie, taking the van down the coast, or giving the V8 a workout around Lakeside, this summer drivers can find the cheapest fuel and spend more on what really matters.

“In the last year alone, using apps could have saved Queensland drivers up to $147.”

Mr Millar, who represents the Gregory electorate, said that just showed Queensland was governed from Brisbane, for Brisbane.

“The cost of fuel in regional Queensland, and particularly inland Queensland, has been a scandal for years,” he said.

“For the Labor minister to tell residents of towns like Emerald and Longreach that if they had been using the app over the last year they could have saved up to $147 is just insulting and laughable.

“Last time I checked on the RACQ app, there was a 15 cent difference on unleaded fuel.”

The RACQ welcomed the move by the government to honour its election commitment to make the two-year mandatory fuel reporting trial permanent, saying it put purchase power back in the hands of motorists.

“The only chance we have of making the price cycle and local competition work for us as drivers is to buy when fuel is at its cheapest, and where it is at its cheapest, and that’s what the fuel price data gives us,” RACQ head of public policy Rebecca Michael said.

Mr Millar said road travel was often the only form of transport for country Queenslanders with a lack of public transport options to get to school or work, and with sporting carnivals hundreds of kilometres away.

He said the state government used to recognise the lack of access to retail fuel competition with a fuel excise rebate, but when Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk was Anna Bligh’s Transport Minister, she cut the fuel excise rebate.

“Now she looks for someone else to blame,” he said.

Mr Millar said he would take the suggestion of a fuel subsidy to the LNP party room but he was speaking as an individual MP and that it wasn’t official LNP policy.

In the meantime, he said that with many inland Queenslanders about to drive thousands of kilometres over Christmas, this wasn’t the time to boast about fuel prices in the south east.

“To Minister De Brenni, I say stop grandstanding, get across your brief and stop insulting us.”

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