Petrol prices fuel anger
11:12am Friday 4th October 2013 in News
VALE MP Alun Cairns has written to petrol station chief executives after a constituent complained he had had his fill of Barry’s prices.
Motorists noted last weekend that the price of a litre of unleaded petrol in Morrisons, Barry Waterfront, was 134.9 per litre, but nine miles away in Cardiff Bay the same store was pricing the fuel at 129 per litre.
Alun said: “This situation is wholly unacceptable and has a significant impact on the cost of living for residents in Barry and the Vale.
“I’ve been monitoring prices in the Vale for some time and we are consistently paying three or four pence per litre extra. This is significant and there would rightly be an outcry if the Chancellor increased fuel duty in this way. There can be no explanation when the same supermarket selling the same petrol bought from the same suppliers has such a difference in cost. It cannot be said that there is a lack of competition in Barry as there are other petrol stations. These all seem to have higher petrol prices and this could suggest the existence of a cartel."
Constituent and former colleague of Alun Cairns, Kevin Hearne, said: "This is a penalty by postcode and is wholly uneven. Pricing should be consistent and transparency is vital especially when the stores are but nine miles apart."
A Morrisons spokesman said: “Morrisons, like most fuel retailers in the UK, uses a local pricing policy in order to deliver benefits to as many motorists across the country as possible. It means we’re able to be competitive in every market in which we operate, and are often the cheapest in the area. A local pricing model also helps us manage differing overhead costs concerning real estate, transport and logistics. Most importantly though for motorists, it allows us make sure all of our petrol stations are manned late at night and therefore safe places to fill up. The local pricing mechanism also allows us to operate petrol stations in more remote areas which would not be economically viable with a national pricing policy.”