Fuel prices leaving customers 'shaking their heads'

Drive 30/04/2018
Photo: File

A leaked internal email shows how fuel giant BP recovers the costs of a struggling store.

The email showed that in Ōtaki, where the local BP service station was struggling, the company would raise the price of surrounding BP stations instead of dropping the price to compete, and hope the competition followed suite.

"Rather than just reducing the price in Ōtaki we will be looking to increase the price at Paraparaumu & Kāpiti and also Levin," BP pricing manager Suzanne Lucas wrote.

In a statement BP justified its decision to alter the prices.

"Petrol prices in New Zealand are highly competitive and we adjust our prices in response to local competition, particularly in instances where discounting has become unsustainable, which is what occurred in the lower North Island last year," a BP spokesperson said.

"We believe competition on price will remain a key characteristic of the New Zealand fuel market in the coming years."

While the practice has raised a few eyebrows there is nothing illegal with the practice.

Paul Smith from Consumer NZ joined Ryan Bridge on RadioLIVE Drive to talk about fuel prices.

Larry Green, co-founder of Gaspy, a new app that compares fuel prices also spoke to Ryan Bridge. He says more than 100,000 New Zealanders have signed up for the Gaspy app.

Listen to both interviews in full above.

Drive with Ryan Bridge and Lisa Owen, 3pm - 6pm Weekdays and streaming live on 'rova' channel 9 - available on Android and iPhone.