CONCERNS are growing across Australia about the price of petrol with its cost in the Wimmera and other regional areas growing.
As of Thursday, October 21 prices of petrol in Horsham are at $1.60 per litre, while in Stawell prices vary from $1.51 to $1.59.
Petrol prices have started to surge in October and experts have warned Australians face paying petrol prices of $2 per litre as people across the world travel more.
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One person who works in the industry in Horsham said he wasn't concerned about prices getting too high in the regional areas.
"We're not like Melbourne," he said. "I can't see Horsham or country prices going up to $2."
He said he wasn't concerned and people who generally remark on the prices understand they are out of his control. "People need petrol," he said. "We can't do much about it can we?"
He said he liked to look after the community as much as possible.
"But wholesale prices keep going up and up," he said. "We've still got to make margins, we still have to pay wages and pay for the power to stay on."
He also said he had seen prices as high as $1.80 to $1.90 in the past.
"The oil companies have us where they want us," he said.
"But people have to drive."
World markets are behind the latest rise. On Monday, the price of US crude oil jumped by more than two per cent to a seven-year high of $US81.50 ($A111) a barrel before settling down to around $US80 per barrel overnight.
Deep Data Analytics chief executive Mathan Somasundaram said rising oil, gas and coal prices had the potential to damage the economy.
"The oil price is a huge deal because it adds to everyone's cost," Mr Somasundaram said. "The US and Europe are going into their winter and they will use a lot for heating, and the prices are going through the roof."
The local fuel price is in stark contrast to 12 months ago at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic.
According to the the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC), average retail petrol prices in 2020-21 in Australia's five largest cities were the lowest in 22 years in real inflation adjusted terms.
Annual average retail prices in 2020-21 in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth were 129.7 cents per litre (cpl), a decrease of 4.9 cpl from 2019-20 (134.6 cpl). In real terms, the last time annual average retail prices were lower than this was in 1998-99 when they were 115.0 cpl.
The major factor in the pain felt at the petrol pump was Australia's high excise duty.
In 2020-21, taxes were the largest component of the price of petrol in Australia, and greater than the cost of refined petrol.
Taxes accounted for 42 per cent of the price, while the international price of refined petrol accounted for 39 per cent.
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