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Oil Companies Remain Silent on Petrol Prices

20.9.2005

The Australian Automobile Association today called on oil companies to explain to Australian motorists why petrol is so expensive when government and other charges have remained relatively stable.

 

AAA Executive Director, Lauchlan McIntosh, called on the oil companies to get involved in the current national debate on high prices, which to date has focussed on government charges and excise.

 

Mr McIntosh said that, while government charges were static in relation to excise charges on the production of petrol, the price increases seemed to be more from the oil companies increasing their profit margins.

 

“It is time for the oil companies to come clean with the Australian public on their pricing policies,” he said.

 

“On behalf of Australian motorists, we have asked the companies to explain their pricing polices and the high margins being charged on petrol – the companies have chosen to remain silent, which is doing the wrong thing by the Australian public.”

 

Mr McIntosh also called on the Federal Government to show leadership on the issue and have the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission  report regularly on the oil companies’ pricing policies and margins.

 

“This would ensure transparency and inform the public,” he said.

 

“Australian motorists are under the hammer on petrol prices – they are paying out of their household budgets to cover these increased petrol prices and they deserve to know why the prices are so high.

 

“The oil companies and the Government have chosen not to attend the NRMA petrol summit this week, which would have been the opportunity to advise Australian motorists on petrol prices and the future.

 

“The Government should also look at the ACCC’s powers to ensure they are adequate to report on the oil companies’ pricing policies – to allow the ACCC to put the blow torch on the companies to tell us why their margins are so high.”

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