The average cost of a litre of petrol has fallen to its lowest level since August 2017, according to the latest AA Ireland fuel price survey.
The report adds that this is the second successive downward trend following a 2018 that was largely dominated by high fuel costs.
A litre of petrol currently costs 132.9c on average, down from 136.9c in December 2018. Meanwhile, diesel car owners can expect to pay 127.9c per litre on average, which is a drop of 4c from the previous month.
Diesel prices are at the lowest level seen since April 2018.
“2018 felt like a year of unrelenting surges when it came to pump prices, so it’s certainly reassuring for motorists to see prices trending in the opposite direction to start the New Year,” Conor Faughnan, AA Director of Consumer Affairs stated.
“However it’s important to remember that we are not seeing this drop as the result of an act of kindness from the government or an easing of taxes, but as a result of international factors which are always vulnerable to reversing in the opposite direction at any instance.”
One of the main factors in the recent downward trend is the reduction in cost for crude oil, which has settled at a cost of between $55 and $65 per barrel since December of last year.
For much of 2018, this figure was between $75 and $85 per barrel.
AA Ireland believes that due to the excessive tax on petrol and diesel, motorists are still paying more than they should for fuel.
The group estimates that 64.42% of the cost of each litre of petrol sold in Ireland is made up of various taxes, while 57.71% of diesel’s pump price comes from government taxation.
“For many people in Ireland, particularly those living in rural areas, the car is their only means of reliable transport and as a result crucial to their ability to get to work and continue to contribute to the Irish economy,” Faughnan added.
“The current levels of taxation only serve to punish these people for the failure of the current governments and their predecessors to improve public transport options across the country.”
The AA has called on the government to provide people across Ireland with reliable public transport options so that they have legitimate alternatives, as opposed to “simply forcing them into a corner and punishing them when they try to escape by their sole reliable transport option”.
© 2019 Checkout – your source for the latest Irish retail news. Article by Aidan O’Sullivan. Click subscribe to sign up for the Checkout print edition.