Like most businesses in New Zealand, fuel retailers set the price they sell their products to consumers. The Commission does not regulate fuel prices in New Zealand.
Market study into retail fuel
In December 2019 the Commission completed its first market study into the supply of retail petrol and diesel used in land transport in New Zealand.
The study found a number of shortcomings in the competitiveness of fuel markets. More information on the market study can be found on the fuel market study project page.
As a result, the Government introduced the Fuel Industry Act 2020 (the Act). The Act sets up a regulatory regime for fuel with the purpose of promoting competition in engine fuel markets for the long-term benefit of consumers. It is expected to come into force in stages from August 2021. You can find out more information on the regulation of fuel markets and the Commission’s monitoring and enforcement role in the fuel regulation section of our website.
Competition and consumer protection laws
In addition to the Fuel Industry Act, the Commission enforces other legislation that applies to the fuel sector. This includes the Commerce Act which prohibits anti-competitive behaviour and acquisitions that substantially lessen competition, and the Fair Trading Act, which prohibits false and misleading conduct and other unfair business practices.
Information on fuel prices and margins
MBIE carries out weekly monitoring of “importer margins” for regular petrol and automotive diesel. The importer margin is the money retailers have to cover local transport and the costs of selling fuel in New Zealand, as well as profit. See more on the MBIE website.
The AA also monitors prices and margins and has information on their website including a breakdown of the components of the price of fuel. See more on the AA website.