Fuel prices won’t go back to pre-lockdown levels ‘for some time’ as costs remain stable

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Fuel prices are still a shadow of pre-lockdown levels despite gradual increases since the summer. However, RAC fuel price spokesman Simon Williams has claimed it could be a while before costs go back to traditional rates.

He warned the fuel market “seems to be down overall” as a result of the pandemic and predicted that new lockdown restrictions could see prices frozen.

He said it would be a “benefit” for drivers to see prices remain at current rates for the time being.

Mr Williams told Express.co.uk: “I would like to think for all drivers benefits that we won’t go back to [January] prices for some time.

“I think the fuel market seems to be down overall and hopefully we won’t go back to those January prices anytime soon.

“But it’s more of a hope than an absolute prediction to be honest.

Mr Williams added: “The situation is at the moment with the likelihood of greater movement restrictions, it’s unlikely that prices are likely to go up.

“It’s unlikely that pump prices will rise racially in the coming weeks, possibly months.”

RAC Fuel Watch has also predicted there to be no change for unleaded and super unleaded fuels in the near future.

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Official government statistics show that petrol prices have remained at 113p per litre since the middle of August.

This period of stability follows sudden price hikes over the summer where prices increased by around 1p per litre every week.

Current costs are still around 9p per litre higher than the lowest point in 2020 where prices reached 104.87p per litre at the end of May.

However, fuel costs are still down from the end of January when petrol pump costs averaged 127.33p per litre.

The RAC has claimed that filling up an average 55-litre fuel tank would cost drivers just £63 under the current prices.

This would equate to a £7 difference when compared to costs at the start of the year.

Diesel prices have also remained at 118p per litre since the 17th August with prices dropping by just 0.02p over the last five weeks.

Diesel prices also increased by around 1p litre over the summer before sudden drops at the start of the pandemic.

Current prices are 14p per litre lower than the 132.88 pence per litre average recorded at the end of January.

RAC analysis has revealed that diesel drivers would pay just £65 to fill up a tank of petrol compared to £73 in January.

Earlier this week, Mr Williams warned that diesel drivers should feel ‘short-changed’ as he revealed retailers had kept prices “artificially high”.

He revealed diesel owners should be paying far less as wholesale prices have been reduced.

He added: “The price of a litre is currently 8p higher than it should be due to reductions in the wholesale price.

“In fact, the wholesale price of diesel has now been lower than the petrol equivalent for six weeks, yet petrol continues to be sold for 3.5p less than diesel.

“This must surely be difficult for retailers to justify. We strongly urge them to lower their prices in an effort to restore drivers’ trust.”

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