Member for Eastern Victoria Melina Bath has urged families and businesses to make their voices heard in a parliamentary inquiry into regional fuel prices.
Nationals and Liberal MPs fought hard to establish the inquiry, which will work to provide regional Victorians with answers on how petrol prices are determined in country areas.
Speaking at the Traralgon depot of Tripodi Brothers Haulage and Produce, Ms Bath said Gippsland motorists and business operators felt they had been left in the dark.
“Unlike other investigations into petrol prices, the spotlight with this Inquiry is on regional Victorian communities and what can be done to relieve the pressure high fuel prices add to the cost of living and doing business,” Ms Bath said.
The inquiry will compare the price of unleaded, diesel and LPG fuels both with metropolitan areas, but also between different regional communities. It will also look at the impacts on country families, businesses and industry.
“For many regional Victorians, public transport just isn’t an option and private transport is their only reliable means of getting from A to B.”
“Many people have raised concerns with me about high fuel prices and the perceived and actual differences between country and city areas.”
“For transport operators, fuel is obviously one of the major costs, so price differences have a significant impact.”
Managing Director of Tripodi Brothers, Gino Tripodi, welcomes the opportunity to have his say.
“There is regularly quite a difference between country and city prices. For a transport business like ours that is going to the city regularly, we have a decision to make,” Mr Tripodi said.
“I am passionate about supporting local jobs, but 5 cents a litre difference between country and city adds up to a lot.”
“With the chain store pricing of food, whether you buy across the road from the distribution centre or close to the state border, the price of a product is the same. Unfortunately this is not the same with our fuel supply chains,” he concluded.
Submissions can be made until Friday 22 September 2017 at http://www.parliament.vic.gov.au/eejsc/article/3834 or emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org