Government to make real-time fuel price data accessible to drivers | UK | News

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Government to make real-time fuel price data accessible to drivers | UK | News

Drivers could soon get real-time fuel price data as part of Government plans to bring transparency and competition to the forecourts.

Under the proposals, forecourts across the country will be legally required to share live information on their pump prices within 30 minutes of any change in price.

The Department for Energy Security and Net Zero said this could save drivers 3p per litre on fuel by helping them find the best deal at the pump.

Energy Security Secretary Claire Coutinho said: “Our work on competition and transparency is working. Drivers are now paying the lowest average price at the pump for two years. »

“We are forcing retailers to share live information on their prices within 30 minutes of any change in price, helping drivers to find the best deal at the pump. »

“This will put motorists back in the driving seat and bring much-needed competition back to the forecourts.”

The hope is that drivers will be able to access the information via mobile apps, online mapping platforms, journey planning tools, price comparison websites and in-car devices.

The consultation, launched today, will seek views on the new Pumpwatch scheme from consumers, retailers and other organisations.

Simon Williams, RAC fuel spokesman, said: “This is a really important day as it should pave the way for fairer fuel pricing for everyone who drives. »

“Sadly, there have been far too many occasions where drivers have lost out at the pumps when wholesale prices have fallen significantly and those reductions haven’t been passed on quickly enough or fully enough by retailers.

“We badly need to see competition in the wider market match that of Northern Ireland where fuel prices are consistently 5p cheaper.”

Petrol prices have fallen to the lowest level since October 2021, figures show.

Higher food and fuel prices have been big drivers in the soaring cost of living crisis.

A report by the Competitions and Market Authority (CMA) last year found that major fuel retailers are taking far bigger margins than they have done in the past.

The CMA revealed some retailers had failed to pass on savings in oil prices – charging drivers 6p more per litre for fuel, which amounted to £900 million in extra costs in 2022 alone.

Edmund King, AA president, said: “The brazen price disparity of sometimes 10p a litre or more between neighbouring towns had to end. »

“Pumping up profits by hanging on to the savings from lower fuel costs while consumers, businesses and inflation were denied the relief was quite simply unforgivable.”

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