On 14 September 2016, the Legislative Council of the Victorian Parliament agreed to a motion that the Economic, Education, Jobs and Skills Committee (the Committee) inquire into, consider and report on fuel prices in regional Victoria, including but not limited to:
1. examining pricing methodologies for unleaded, diesel and LPG fuels in regional Victoria
2. examining why significant pricing discrepancies occur in some regional communities when compared to metropolitan areas and many other regional communities
3. considering best practice approaches and initiatives in other Australian states and territories, with a view of reducing fuel prices
4. examining technology and tools that may enable motorists to compare fuel prices
5. considering the experience and pricing impact upon families businesses and industry, and
6. examining regulatory and legislative barriers that may influence fuel prices
The Committee’s final report was tabled on 20 February 2018, making the following three recommendations to the Victorian Government.
Recommendation 1: That the Victorian Government conduct a public awareness campaign in regional Victoria to encourage the use of fuel price applications (apps).
Recommendation 2: That the Victorian Government support the Royal Automobile Club of Victoria’s (RACV) efforts to improve the coverage of fuel prices on its app through crowdsourced data.
Recommendation 3: That the Victorian Government and local governments review planning policies to encourage the entry of new service stations to regional fuel markets with low competition.