Fuel industry is profitable, but profits not 'super' - Gull manager

Drive 09/10/2018
Photo: Getty.

A leading fuel company manager believes the costs involved getting oil to New Zealand is behind the rise in fuel prices.

According to the Prime Minister, New Zealand's petrol price may be the product of 'profiteering'.

Petrol prices have risen extremely fast over the past year due to a combination of global market forces, a weakening New Zealand dollar and tax increases.

Jacinda Ardern has one culprit behind the high price in her sights, petrol companies, and the Government is rushing through legislation to allow the Commerce Commission to investigate pricing.

But Dave Bodger, general manager of Gull, told RadioLIVE Drive that while the industry has not been profitable in the past, it is now - though they are not "super profits".

He doesn't think the PM is pointing the finger at them as Gull's prices can be around 20 cents a litre lower than the competition.

But believe it or not, we're still paying less at the pump than motorists in some countries.

Photo: Newshub.

According to website globalpetrolprices.com based on information from October 1 we're paying  a fair bit more than Iran's $0.44 per litre.

But our average price of around $2.53 per litre is nowhere near the most expensive price listed on the site - Hong Kong's $3.33.

The United Kingdom ($2.65), Barbados (3.04) and Iceland ($3.11) are all paying more than New Zealand, but Montenegro ($2.46), South Africa ($1.75) and Australia ($1.72) are all paying less.

Tax makes up 69.98 cents per litre of unleaded petrol and 0.33 cents per litre on diesel. Auckland residents also pay an extra 10 cents per litre plus GST for the regional fuel tax.

The next tax rise will be in September 2019, when the excise on petrol will go up another 3.5 cents per litre.

Transport Minister Phil Twyford said the increase will fund $5 billion worth of investment into infrastructure.

Listen to the full interview with Dave Bodger above.

Drive with Ryan Bridge, 3pm - 6pm Weekdays and streaming live on rova available on Android and iPhone.