Oil prices crash to lowest levels since 1973, but petrol prices still 'dishonestly' high

With oil prices plummeting to their lowest level since 1973, the FairFuelUK Campaign say UK petrol prices are still “dishonestly high”.

FairFuelUK is calling for a watchdog to be established. Picture: PA

The WTI (West Texas Intermediate) oil prices plunged by around 50 per cent this week to $8.75 a barrel, the lowest level since December 1973, with Brent predicted to follow, with demand for oil collapsing so much due to the coronavirus pandemic that facilities for storing crude are nearly full.

Big oil producers have announced cutbacks in production in hopes of better balancing supplies with demand, but many analysts say it is not enough."Basically, bears are out for blood," analyst Naeem Aslam of Avatrade said in a report. "The steep fall in the price is because of the lack of sufficient demand and lack of storage place given the fact that the production cut has failed to address the supply glut."

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However, Howard Cox, founder of FairFuelUK Campaign said that the UK’s fuel supply chain has dishonestly held back March’s massive wholesale falls from filling up at the pumps, stating that petrol should be around 98p per litre and Diesel 106p per litre, instead it is averaging 10p higher.

Mr Cox said: “Even with 70 per cent less fuel being sold, the dishonesty from these faceless businesses, using the Coronavirus crisis as a smokescreen to maintain their profits, beggars belief.

"A few hoodwinked MPs have responded to FairFuelUK’s concerns for 37m drivers. They say they believe that the most effective way to keep fuel prices down is through an open and competitive market.

“In 2013, the Office for Fair Trading investigated competition in the UK fuel sector and concluded that it was operating well. That is absolute claptrap. That enquiry was an utter whitewash and everyone knows it had the smell of big business manipulating the result."

Mr Cox added that it’s time the Government protected the highest taxed drivers in the world and the UK’s vital haulage industry by introducing an independent pricing watchdog called PumpWatch as a “matter of emergency”, he said: “An independent pricing watchdog is vital to protect our economy and allow essential workers to fill up their vehicles with the fairest and most honest prices at the pumps.”