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“They just can’t get enough oil onto the market”: Petrol hits decade-high prices

Unleaded prices in Melbourne surged as high as $1.67 a litre this week, in the biggest price hike at the bowser in a decade.

The Herald Sun reports leading fuel data source MotorMouth confirmed prices at individual sites were the highest since mid-2008, when some outlets sold unleaded fuel for about $1.70 a litre.

Comm Sec Chief Economist Craig James told Kate and Quarters the high prices are due to a number of factors.

“There’s some concerns about Iran and production later in the year, whether they’re going to have enough oil to go onto the market,” Craig said.

“The global economy is actually doing quite well, the US economy is growing at a four percent annual pace, and China is doing ok, so there’s a greater demand for oil and not enough supply.

“Places like Iran and Venezuela just can’t get enough oil onto the market.”

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“The other complicating factor for us is the Aussie dollar has come down, making it more expensive for us to buy our fuel from the refining hubs like Singapore,” he said.

“It’s in the hands of the OPEC oil producers unfortunately and we don’t have much sway on them.”