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Government Monitoring Rising Petrol Prices

MEDIA RELEASE
August 12, 1999

Government Monitoring Rising Petrol Prices

The Government, through the Ministry of Commerce, is keeping a close eye on petrol price movements and will continue to do so, Enterprise and Commerce Minister Max Bradford said today.

"Internationally, petrol prices have risen significantly in recent months. For example, the price of bulk cargoes of petrol from Singapore rose from around NZ16 cents per litre to 24 cents per litre between February and July this year.

"About one-third of New Zealand's petrol is imported, with much of this coming from Singapore. Further, with an open market, petrol from New Zealand's own refinery is priced according to movements in world markets.

"Because of this, the New Zealand motorist can expect to see pump prices following movements in the world market," Mr Bradford said.

Mr Bradford said as all oil companies were operating in the same world market, it was not surprising that if their costs all increased at the same time and by the same amount, that their retail prices would closely follow one another.

"Earlier this year world prices were low and the motorist was able to take advantage of low prices here in New Zealand," Mr Bradford said.

ENDS

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