Labor’s New Policy – Higher Petrol Prices for All

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Labor’s New Policy – Higher Petrol Prices for All





Kim Beazley’s Plan for Fuel is a recipe for higher petrol prices throughout Australia.

Under Labor’s policy, any petrol station that engages in deep or sustained petrol price discounting will be at risk of prosecution under the Trade Practices Act.

A rival station owner may report any service station that discounts petrol to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) if it believes that the price discounting has the effect of damaging its business.

Further, Labor’s proposed reversal of the onus of proof and weakening of the standard of proof under section 46, will make service station owners vulnerable to legal action against themfor cutting petrol prices to consumers!

Maximum Wholesale Prices

Labor’s proposal to reintroduce the failed policy of setting maximum wholesale prices for petrol has already been condemned by Australia’s peak motoring organisation, the Australian Automobile Association, representing Australia’s motoring service clubs.

The AAA opposes the setting of maximum wholesale prices because it reduces competition. Lower competition means higher prices.

It appears that Labor has not even read the Industry Commission report into petroleum products, which found that setting maximum wholesale prices for petrol resulted in higher petrol prices for consumers, as oil companies used the maximum price as a target following the end of a discounting cycle.


The ALP’s promise to introduce the Oilcode is pure hypocrisy. It was the ALP that blocked the Coalition Government’s reform package including a legislatively backed and strengthened Oilcode in the Senate.

Labor’s promises are all one-sided. There is nothing that will benefit consumers.

Gate Left Open For New Taxes

Labor’s policy fails to commit to no new taxes on fuel.

Labor’s Record

Labor’s record on fuel tax when last in office speaks for itself.


  • Introduced twice-yearly indexation of fuel excise in its first Budget;
  • Increased petrol excise by over 28 cents per litre (or over 450%);
  • Broke its 1993 election promise to not increase taxes by increasing petrol and diesel excise by 5 cents a litre (7 cents a litre for leaded petrol).

By contrast, the Coalition:

  • Abolished Labor’s indexation of fuel excise;
  • Cut petrol excise by 6.7 cents a litre in July 2000, and a further 1.5 cents a litre in March 2001;
  • Introduced a Fuel Sales Grants Scheme paying grants of 1 and 2 cents a litre to petrol retailers in rural and remote Australia;
  • Slashed fuel tax for business users through input tax credits for GST on fuel;
  • Introduced the Diesel and Alternative Fuels Grants Scheme, reducing costs for heavy transport by 18.5 cents per litre; and
  • Extended the Diesel Fuel Rebate Scheme to marine and rail transport.

The record speaks for itself. Kim Beazley and the Labor Party can’t be trusted when it comes to petrol.


29 October 2001


Niki Savva

Treasurer’s office

0418 868 710

Jennifer Eddy

Senator Minchin’s office

0419 432 664