Watch out for diesel price gouging, warns peak body

With the return of the full fuel excise from today – up from 22.1 cents per litre (cpl) to 46cpl – truckies are being warned about the potential for price gouging at the bowsers.

As the South Australian Road Transport Association (SARTA) told its members this week the full fuel excise should not be applied to fuel stocks already on the ground.

“We understand there are some 700 million litres in stock,” said SARTA executive officer Steve Shearer.

“We encourage all operators to watch out for price gouging that may well occur if fuel outlets sell you fuel that they only paid 22.1cpl excise on but they charge you the full restored 46cpl for it.

“That would be gouging 23.9cpl from your back pocket.”

If that happens, Shearer said SA operators should report it to the Office of Business and Consumer Services (BCS) in Adelaide.

“The responsible SA Minister said on radio this morning that BCS would be watching fuel prices move and would take complaints.”

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) said it expects there will be no uncharacteristic or abnormal retail price increases in the days leading up to, on the day of, or after the reintroduction of the full rate of fuel excise.

“Following the excise reintroduction, the ACCC will be monitoring wholesale and retail prices closely and will not hesitate to take action where there is evidence of misleading or deceptive conduct, misrepresentation about the excise increase and retail prices, and anti-competitive behaviour (such as price collusion),” said a statement on the ACCC website.

The National Road Transport Association (NatRoad) also reminded its members of these important notes from the ATO about the reinstatement of fuel tax credits from today.

  • Eligible businesses must apply the applicable fuel tax credit rate based on the date the fuel was acquired.
  • Eligible businesses that use fuel in heavy vehicles for travelling on public roads can claim fuel tax credits for fuel acquired. They cannot claim between 30 March 30 to September 28, 2022, because the road user charge exceeds the excise duty paid, reducing the fuel tax credit rate to nil.
  • The road user charge for liquid fuels will increase to 27.2 cents per litre. This means the fuel tax credit rate for liquid fuels used in heavy vehicles for travelling on public roads will change to 18.8 cents per litre.

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