Oil price at 2008 high

Matamata Chronicle - - News -

The price of oil con­tin­ued to rise dur­ing Fe­bru­ary, jump­ing US$15 a bar­rel or 15 per cent, to reach US$115, a fig­ure not seen since Au­gust 2008.

The ris­ing cost saw a litre of 91 oc­tane petrol in­crease 3 cents per litre to $2.03 per litre in the main cen­tres, with diesel ris­ing 6 cents to $1.43 at most sta­tions.

‘‘Or­di­nar­ily, the big jump in oil prices due to the cri­sis in ma­jor oil ex­porter Libya would have led to a large in­crease at the pump in New Zealand dur­ing Fe­bru­ary but the oil com­pa­nies held off rais­ing prices un­til March due to the Christchurch earth­quake and the need to main­tain fuel sup­plies into the city. Even then, the oil com­pa­nies have cho­sen not to in­crease prices in Christchurch for the fore­see­able fu­ture, which is com­mend­able,’’ said AA PetrolWatch spokesper­son Mark Stock­dale. ‘‘We cal­cu­late that the im­ported cost of petrol has risen 10 cents per litre since the last pump price rise on 16 Fe­bru­ary, which is dou­ble what the oil com­pa­nies have passed on at the pump and their costs have in­creased again since then. Un­less oil prices drop soon, it is likely that re­tail prices will rise again.’’

Ac­cord­ing to AA PetrolWatch, the last time oil prices were this high, 91 oc­tane petrol cost $2.03 per litre but petrol taxes were 13 cents lower. Diesel, which has no fuel ex­cise, was $1.80 per litre due to a higher com­mod­ity price.

For more in­for­ma­tion, go www.aa.co.nz/aapetrol­watch.

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