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RAC claims diesel drivers are being overcharged at UK Pumps

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Diesel drivers in the UK are being overcharged by around 16p per litre at the pumps, according to a report by the RAC.

The RAC, along with other motoring groups, has been arguing for some time that the cost of fuel is too high, and is contributing to the country's inflation and cost of living issues.

The analysis from RAC Fuel Watch showed diesel was 6p a litre cheaper than petrol on the wholesale market, yet the average pump price for diesel stood at 159.43p, compared to 146.5p for petrol.

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While diesel prices at forecourts dropped by 4p per litre in April, the RAC believes that drivers should be paying no more than 143p per litre.

In Northern Ireland, where there is a fuel price transparency mechanism in place, prices were found to be more realistic, at 147.47p per litre.

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Fuel retailers have been accused of raising prices quickly when wholesale costs spike, but being slow to reduce prices when costs decrease.

UK drivers faced record fuel bills last year due to the rising cost of oil caused by Russia's war in Ukraine.

Fuel prices became a significant driver of inflation, which hit a 41-year high in the autumn of 2022.

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Though costs have only slowly come down since oil prices peaked in June of that year, supermarkets are now once again offering fuel promotions to lure cash-strapped shoppers.

The RAC found supermarket diesel was 2.75p cheaper than the national average, while supermarket unleaded was 3.5p cheaper.

Motoring groups and campaign groups have been calling for greater transparency over the cost of fuel, but a report by the Competition and Markets Authority gave retailers a clean bill of health.

Despite this, the RAC continues to argue that fuel prices are too high, and are causing significant problems for motorists and businesses in the UK.

RAC fuel spokesman Simon Williams told to SkyNews: "We feel there should be an obligation on retailers to reflect wholesale price movements on their forecourts.

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"Sadly, the only place this seems to happen is in Northern Ireland where a litre of diesel is, incredibly, being sold for 12p less than the UK-wide average.

"Our data shows that the average retailer margin on a litre of diesel is a shocking 22p a litre compared to petrol which is around 8p.

"The long-term average for both fuels is 7p which means retailers are making three times what they have in the past for diesel. This is hard for them to justify and equally hard for diesel drivers to swallow.

"Action at a government level is badly needed to stop drivers being ripped off any longer."

Gordon Balmer, executive director of the Petrol Retailers Association which represents independent operators told to SkyNews : "The independent sector accounts for approximately 36% market share by fuel sale while the supermarkets are market leaders at 45%."

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