Sydney motorists woke up this morning to the highest average price for regular unleaded petrol on record, breaching $1.70 per litre, with further hikes expected this week.
Average prices for regular unleaded are expected to peak in the coming days to over $1.74 per litre before slowly falling again.
The average of 170.2 cents per litre has climbed off the back of seven-year-high oil prices driven by rising demand globally at the same time that production levels have been kept stubbornly low by oil producing countries.
Melbourne, with $1.74 per litre, and Brisbane, at $1.76 per litre, have also broke highest average price records in those cities today.
Singapore Mogas, Australia’s international benchmark price, closed trading last week at almost $US100.
It has risen $US84 a barrel since July last year.
The gap between the cheapest and most expensive service station in Sydney today is 56 cents per litre – a $31 saving on a full tank of fuel.
Diesel prices are also rising quickly as Gasoil prices climb to $US98 a barrel, with average prices for diesel now at $1.58 per litre.
Diesel prices are expected to continue rising as European countries look to use it as a substitute to gas.
According to NRMA, almost one-quarter of service stations in Sydney are currently selling regular unleaded for less than 159.5 cents per litre.
Alarmingly, 40 per cent of service stations in the NSW capital are selling petrol at 181.9 cents per litre.
NRMA spokesperson Peter Khoury said the record average price for fuel would hit family budgets just as further restrictions around Sydney were being lifted.
“These record prices could not have come at a worse time – just as families are getting out and about the city’s economic activity was meant to be ramping up,” Mr Khoury said.
“With OPEC showing no desire to increase oil production levels, we are now seriously concerned that there is little relief in sight and that is bad news for families and the economy.
“These prices are going to hurt family budgets and the importance of doing some research before filling up has never been clearer.”Internet Explorer Channel Network