10th July 2015
Motoring group RAC has called on supermarkets to pass on fuel cost savings to consumers after the price of diesel drops.
It is urging supermarkets to pass on a 2p a litre reduction on the cost of diesel to motorists. RAC Fuel Watch data shows the wholesale price of diesel has now fallen 6p a litre lower than petrol, meaning there is scope for at least another 3p a litre cut.
The fall in prices comes as Saudi Arabia opens up new oil refinery plants. The wholesale price of diesel was 1p to 3p lower than petrol through the month, yet the average price of a litre of diesel at the pump is 120p, compared to 117p for petrol.
‘A fundamental change in the fuel market is taking place as a result of Saudi Arabia opening two new refineries last year geared to the production of refined oil products, including diesel,’ said RAC fuel spokesman Simon Williams.
‘Saudi Arabia had previously concentrated on exporting crude, leaving refining to other countries, but greater European demand for diesel has led the kingdom to increase its refining capacity to create a profitable additional source of income.
Williams said the operations in Saudi Arabia would have a benefit to UK motorists at the pump.
‘We expect this increase in diesel production to have a long-term positive effect on pump prices,’ he said. ‘If retailers operate transparently we will see reductions in the wholesale price of diesel passed on at the forecourt. This should mean diesel will soon be sold for the same price as petrol, or less just as it is in the other countries around Europe.’
He said some independent forecourts had brought diesel prices down already but ‘we should be seeing this on a wider scale on supermarket forecourts’.
‘This should be just the beginning of a series of cuts,’ said Williams. ‘We believe it would be fairer for motorists driving diesel vehicles if supermarkets made bigger cuts in one fell swoop rather than trying to phase price reductions over an extended period.’