Why are our petrol prices still so high?
By CRAIG McTEAR
DON'T get David Quinn started on petrol prices.
The Coffs Harbour 46-year-old is angry he has to pay a small fortune to fill up compared with motorists in Sydney.
Back on August 29, he put only $40 worth of unleaded petrol in his sedan in Coffs Harbour ? with the price at 146.9 cents a litre, he knew he could find cheaper fuel as he headed south on his trip to Sydney.
Sure enough, he filled up just south of Kew where he paid 136.9 cents.
But when he reached the Sydney suburb of Ryde, he noticed the price hovered between $1.21 and $1.22.
"I was infuriated. We're paying about 22 cents more for petrol in Coffs Harbour," David said.
"We've always been told it takes 10 cents a litre to ship it to Coffs, and that's why we could expect to pay 10 cents more, but not 22 cents on average more.
"I'm disillusioned with the pricing justification."
David moved from Sydney's northern beaches to Coffs Harbour three-and-a-half years ago for a better lifestyle and while he enjoys being here, petrol prices are a constant source of aggravation.
"I do a lot of community work but I can't do as much running around as I need to, because petrol is costing me $60 to $70 a week, sometimes more," he said.
"Maybe our local member, Luke Hartsuyker, should be looking at attracting a subsidy to reduce petrol prices so they're in line with Sydney prices, or a fairer freight deal for petrol."
The NRMA says oil companies are holding hard-working country families over a barrel increasing petrol prices in regional areas by 10 to 20 cents more than what motorists pay in metropolitan areas.
"Quite often in rural areas, families do not have a transport choice other than their cars, and oil companies are blatantly profiting at the expense of rural families," NRMA Motoring and Services director Graham Blight said.
"Motorists in regional towns across NSW have been paying exorbitant prices for petrol for too long and the ACCC (Australian Competition and Consumer Commission) and the Federal Government should be doing something to fix this price gouging."