Brisbane motorists whose cars take liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) are paying on average 10-15 cents per litre (cpl) too much, while wholesalers pocket the profits.
RACQ Executive Manager Advocacy, Lynda Schekoske, said LPG prices should have started dropping in April, when demand eased off at the end of the northern hemisphere winter.
But instead the wholesalers were enjoying excessive margins and were not passing on the savings.
“At an average price of 79.1cpl, with some retailers selling LPG at an exorbitant 87.9cpl, LPG prices are massively inflated in Brisbane at the moment,” Ms Schekoske said.
“Prices should have dropped to an average of 65-70cpl by now.
“The international benchmark price, which drives the LPG prices, has fallen to 42.5cpl, seven cents lower than in April and 17 cents lower than in March, when we saw the highest retail LPG prices on record, at 89.3cpl.
“Usually LPG prices in Brisbane retail at about 23cpl above the international benchmark price – but at the moment LPG users are paying, on average, around 36.6cpl more than the benchmark price.
“The wholesalers are swallowing up the savings instead of passing them onto the fuel retailers who, in turn, can then pass them on to motorists.”
Ms Schekoske said LPG prices were traditionally at their highest during the Australian summer due to demand driven by the use of LPG for heating during the northern hemisphere winter.
“We normally start to see LPG prices falling in Queensland in April and prices continue to drop until they bottom out around August. But it’s now mid-May and Brisbane motorists are still paying excessively high prices for LPG.”
LPG prices in Brisbane (79.1cpl) were also higher than in Melbourne (69.1cpl), Sydney (72.7cpl), and Adelaide (76.5cpl).
Ms Schekoske said Brisbane motorists should shop around for the best LPG prices, and aim to pay no more than 78cpl, the cheapest price readily available.
The cheapest fuel sites can be found daily on RACQ’s website, at www.racq.com/fuel.