EU Asked to Look into Rising Petrol Prices
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The FIA was joined in its quest for transparency by the British Petrol Retailers' Association, who did their part by demanding the British energy minister, Charles Hendry, and soon the Office of Fair Trading, to look into how exactly the price for oil is set.
In Europe, the benchmark prices for oil are set at the Rotterdam spot market, a place where the oil-based products are sold and bought. It is exactly this connection between the benchmark prices and the prices at the pump that made the FIA react.
The FIA suspects that speculation has a huge impact on how the prices at the pump are made. It is this speculation, says the FIA, that leads to market volatility and a negative financial impact on consumers.
"The fact that pump prices essentially depend on guideline prices of the Rotterdam spot market for finished products is a cause of particular astonishment,” the FIA said in a letter to the EU competition commissioner, Joaquin Almunia.
"A platform with such a small volume is doubted to be a representative indicator for the vast European market. Moreover, these far from transparent price-fixing mechanisms do not foster consumer confidence in the functioning of the European oil market."
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