Lack of refineries blamed for latest fuel price increase

Motorhome owners across the UK have once again found that a visit to a filling station is costing them more cash than ever before as fuel prices have rocketed over the past 7 days. It seems the battle to find cheap motorhome insurance and reasonable fuel prices is just getting more difficult every day.

Experts are blaming the price rises on a politically unstable situation in the Middle East, the place where a great percentage of the oil available to mankind is extracted from the ground, and a lack of refining capability across the globe. Motorists in the UK will not really care much about the reasons. They will be just disappointed that fuel prices are in the news again because of their expense and Edmund King, President of the AA and champion of the motoring masses believes it is speculators on the money markets that are making drivers lives a misery. He said: “Once again, UK drivers find themselves being dragged over a barrel. Traditionally, the price of petrol falls off at the end of summer, which makes five-year-high refining margins pushing up pump prices a particularly bitter pill to swallow. Closing Coryton and refineries on both sides of the Atlantic, supposedly because of excess production capacity, seems less justified; and why can’t planning and storage prevent maintenance schedules from driving up the price of petrol before they actually happen? Or is yet another convenient excuse for market speculators to make a killing at the expense of the consumer, business and economic recovery?”

His referral to the closure of the Coryton refining plant in the UK last year does appear to be a valid question. There were no takers when the plant was put up for sale and yet the shortage of refining capacity is pushing the price of petrol and diesel sky high. A spokesman for the UK Petroleum Industry Association refuted accusations of profiteering saying: “Losses last year ran into millions of pounds. A profitable refinery like Coryton was put on the market and could not find a buyer. The picture for refining is bleak, the costs are enormous and refineries are closing in Britain and Europe. At any time in a market you can get abnormalities.”