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Crude oil price cuts = petrol price cuts

Responding to petrol companies justification for high petrol prices Deputy Prime Minister Jim Anderton said 83% of petrol sold in New Zealand comes directly from crude oil imports and that there was no excuse to continue charging high petrol prices.

BP made a statement yesterday that petrol prices could not come down yet because the price of imported refined petrol has not decreased as much as the price of crude oil has.

"It is ludicrous to suggest that petrol prices should remain stable because refined petrol prices have not fallen, when 83% of the petrol sold in New Zealand comes from imported crude oil not imported refined petrol.

"I am concerned that in the last five months petrol prices have increased by 14%, over the same time crude oil prices have actually decreased by 2%. This is not helping the regions or the country's economic development.

In a press release dated 23rd March 2000 Shell says high petrol prices are directly attributable to two key factors:

The high costs of crude oil and the weakening of the New Zealand dollar.

"Since July 16th crude oil prices have decreased by 16% which makes them lower than they were five months ago. This decreased includes fluctuations in the New Zealand dollar.

"Now crude oil prices have come down, there is no excuse, petrol prices must come down.

"My advice to petrol companies is that full page ads will not help your image with the public if you fail to pass on lower prices to New Zealanders," Jim Anderton said.

Enquiries Steven Collett (04) 471 9289 (021) 626 303

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