The consumer affairs watchdog in the UK has recently said that they are going to be looking into the pricing of petrol in the UK, as people are becoming worried that it is about to reach a new record high. The reason why this is such a problem is because the country is still coping with the effects of an economic recession, and many people are finding it difficult to afford petrol.
On Wednesday the Office of Fair Trading made the announcement that they are going to be launching an exercise which is going to look into whether the price of petrol is a fair reflection of the cost of the product to the petrol stations.
It has also said that it is going to be looking into accusations of price coordination between the petrol stations, and is going to see whether the competition authority needs to take any action against them.
The government has become very sensitive about criticism of high fuel prices, especially after a protest that took place in 2000 where lorry drivers caused disruption to supplies because of expensive prices. This caused a huge amount of disruption to public services, companies as well as consumers.
It is expected that the OFT are going to be releasing their results early next year, and from then if they believe there is a case they are going to take further action. It is possible that if there is a case, then fines could be levied against various petrol stations who are charging too much for petrol.
The reason for this investigation is because it has become clear that the price of petrol is not really reflecting the price of crude oil, which it clearly should. It is suspected that various levels of price manipulation could be going on in the industry which is damaging to consumers