Diesel has soared by 15 per cent since July 2009

The cost of motoring in Portugal has soared over the past 12 months according to the latest statistics issued by the Portuguese competition authority Autoridade da Concorrência.

On average, the price of petrol shot up by eight per cent a litre over the past 12 months while diesel skyrocketed by 15 per cent.

Variations in the price of fuel have, on average, wavered between one and 2.4 cents per litre, translating into an increase, at the end of a 12 month period, of around eight Euros and 5.5 Euros more in the cost of filling up a 50 litre fuel tank for a diesel and petrol vehicle.

According to information gathered from petrol outlets up and down the country in the past 12 months, fuel consumption has correspondingly plummeted for both petrol and diesel.

“We’ve seen a fall in consumption of around eight per cent in the sale of both fuels combined,” Virgílio Constantino, President of the National Association of Fuel Retailers (Associação Nacional de Revendedores de Combustíveis – ANAREC) told several daily newspapers over the weekend.

He added that fuel retailers in Portugal were doubly penalised by the cheaper cost of fuel over the border in Spain because of lower fuel taxes.

Virgílio Constantino is arguing for a rethink in the Government’s fuel tax policy which is crippling business, particularly hauliers and other small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) who rely on reasonable fuel prices to keep their businesses profitable.