Fuel prices on the Northern Beaches are currently significantly higher than those in Coffs Harbour.
Fuel prices on the Northern Beaches are currently significantly higher than those in Coffs Harbour. Trevor Veale

Fuel price divide raises questions

A SIGNIFICANT difference in the price of fuel at Coffs Harbour and the Northern Beaches is leaving many wondering how such a variation can be justified.

Coles Express service station at Emerald Beach this week advertised ULP for 130.7/litre.

On the same day, less than 20km south at the new Coffs Harbour Coles Express service station, the price for ULP was a much lower 117.9/litre.

Coffs Harbour is ranked the ninth cheapest place in NSW/ACT for fuel on the NRMA's Bowser Buster website, and Woolgoolga - the only Northern Beaches listing - is ranked number 17.

An NRMA spokesman said the price difference between the two locations was based on local supply and demand.

"Coffs Harbour has a number of service stations and they compete against each other for volume along the highway," he said.

"Emerald Beach is a smaller place, not on the main road and has a lower demand for fuel and is not competitive.

"Even so, a 13 cents per litre difference is not justified."

Prices at other Northern Beaches service stations on the same day were also higher than Coffs Harbour, with the Woolgoolga United advertising 124.7/litre, Woolgoolga Caltex advertising 125.9/litre and Woolgoolga BP advertising 128.5/litre.

Coffs Harbour has been one of the most consistently affordable places for fuel recently, averaging as the seventh cheapest place in NSW/ACT for the past two months.

A turning point for local fuel prices seems to have been the opening of the new Coffs Harbour Coles Express, which continues to drive down prices within the city.

MIND THE GAP
Woolgoolga Caltex 125.9
Woolgoolga BP 128.5
Woolgoolga United 124.7
Emerald Beach Coles Express 130.7
Coffs Harbour Coles Express 117.9



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