RACT's response to the ACCC investigation
ACCC announced on May 8 that Launceston would be the site of its second regional petrol market study.
The deep-dive regional market study aims to investigate and explain each component of the petrol prices paid at the pump to understand why Launceston has experienced some of the highest petrol prices at the pump over the last few years.
In 2013 -14 Launceston experienced an average fuel price some 12cpl higher than the five largest capital cities, and this differential has doubled since 2009-10
The ACCC will be looking to see what the market drivers are at a local level, and hope to shed some light on a range of petrol pricing issues across Tasmania.
Companies throughout the supply chain will be required to provide information to the ACCC under the compulsory information gathering powers it has under section 95ZK of the Competition and Consumer Act.
RACT would hope the enquiry uncovers:
What is the true cost of getting fuel to Tasmania?
Who actually owns fuel sites?
Does any particular retailer have market dominance?
What affect are the supermarket and oil company dominance having on independents?
Is there an over-supply of sites in Launceston?
Is there any illegal activity happening?
Are there any barriers to new entrants in the marketplace?
Is the price difference between standard and premium fuels justified/appropriate
The ACCC has indicated it should have the report finalised and published by December this year.