Victorians are being warned to brace for soaring petrol prices on the back of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
Unleaded fuel reached a peak of $2.06 a litre in Melbourne on Tuesday, according to data monitored by the RACV — a whopping jump from a high of $1.86.9 a litre in the city just one week ago.
At one point during the first lockdown in April 2020, Melburnians could fill up for as little as 76c a litre.
Evan Lucas, head of strategy at InvestSMART, said food and transport costs would inevitably rise due to the rising price of fuel – and would be passed on to consumers.
Mr Lucas, who is an oil analyst, said the worst of the pain was yet to be felt by motorists, with the price of fuel tipped to hit $2.08 a litre across Melbourne within two weeks.
“There’s nothing you can do about it,” he said.
“It’s not the transport companies’ fault, it’s not the farmers’ fault, and it’s just unfortunately what we have to accept.
“Although you may not see what’s going on the other side of the world, it affects you greatly.”
He said tough sanctions imposed on Russia would be felt by Australian consumers after a short lag.
“Companies are buying that refined crude from about two weeks ago, so pricing at the bowser is about two weeks behind,” Mr Lucas said.
“We are going to have to start living with very high oil prices for at least the next month.”
Mr Lucas said relief was dependent on the de-escalation of the conflict in Ukraine, but would be swift when it arrived.
“If there is any sign that Russia will pull back or withdraw troops, the price of oil will come down pretty quickly and therefore you’d hope petrol prices will also come down,” he said.
The cost of fuel plummeted to as low as 76c a litre in April 2020 as Melbourne was plunged into lockdown.
To fill a 70-litre tank then, would cost $53.2.
To fill the same sized tank now would cost $144.2.
Victorian Transport Association chief executive Peter Anderson said he expected transport costs to rise by 20 per cent over the next three months.
“Transport operators cannot wear higher diesel costs forever and will factor it into their cost models, which will lead to higher consumer prices,” he said.
“There are few – if any – parts of the economy that will be exempt from higher prices because transport is a factor in every commodity and transaction.”
A Woolworths spokeswoman said: “We’re yet to see any impact on supply or prices”.
Coles was contacted for comment.
See below some of the most expensive service stations across the state.
Woolworths, Laverton North: $2.059
BP Tarneit: $2.059
Coles Express Clayton: $2.059
BP 2GO Watsonia: $2.059
Ampol Epping: $2.05
Ampol Ballarat: $1.829
Ampol Bendigo: $1.809
Ampol Wodonga: $1.829
Woolworths Shepparton: $1.829
Coles Express Warrnambool: $1.759
Woolworths Mildura: $1.819
Extracted in full from: Victorian petrol prices: Fuel and food costs to rise | Herald Sun