Relief for drivers as petrol companies drop prices

Last updated 05:00 26/07/2013

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Motorists have had some welcome relief as petrol prices yesterday fell from record highs, after crude oil became cheaper on international markets for the first time in a month.

BP and Z Energy both dropped their prices for 91 by 4 cents a litre to 222.9c. Gull is running a 10c-a-litre discount on petrol, so 91 is between 199.9c a litre and 216.9c across its outlets.

Earlier this month, petrol prices reached a record high of 226.9c a litre for 91.

AA PetrolWatch spokesman Mark Stockdale said the drops were welcome relief.

"It's great after two months of price rises we're finally seeing some decreases in pump prices. Things are finally heading in the right direction.

"It's a culmination of a small decrease in commodity prices - which the fuel companies have been quick to pass on - and the exchange rate, which continues to rise."

The price fall is based on a combination of a higher New Zealand dollar, which rose to just under US80c yesterday morning from a low of US77c earlier this month, weak manufacturing data from China, and poor performance from the US stock market overnight.

Z Energy senior communications manager Sheena Thomas said a dip in the cost of refined petrol and diesel on the international market meant that it was able to pass on savings to customers.

"It's a significant decrease for petrol, which we hope will be a welcome relief to motorists, particularly as they travel back home from school holidays."

Gull's 10c-a-litre discount offer ends today.

Mr Stockdale was unsure whether further falls could be expected. "Fingers crossed."

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- The Dominion Post

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