October 15, 2002
(Government Services and Lands)


The following is being released at the request of the Petroleum Products Pricing Commission:

Regulated fuel prices released for October 15 - November 15, 2002

Oil prices continue to reflect the serious impact of ongoing speculation that the United States will use force against Iraq, which produces approximately 2.5 per cent of the world�s oil supply.

The province of Newfoundland and Labrador isn�t in isolation of this international activity.

For the past 30 days, as it has since releasing its first set of regulated prices a year ago today, the Petroleum Products Pricing Commission (PPPC) has continuously monitored the activity of refined oil products on the world market.

Beginning October 15, 2002, maximum prices for petroleum products, including gasoline, diesel, home heat and propane, in the province have been set for the next 30-day period.

Gasoline prices will see a 2.3 or 2.4 cent per litre (cpl) � depending on the impact of HST calculations in a particular pricing zone � increase, while diesel prices will reflect a 2.7 cpl change. Home heating fuel will be adjusted by 2.4 cpl, and propane prices will rise by 2.5 cpl.

George Saunders, PPPC commissioner, said taxation plays a significant role in the regulated prices of fuel for Newfoundland and Labrador when comparing prices across the country.

A look at activity in the petroleum market since April has shown that prices have been steadily increasing, with minimal decreases, he said. Although it is difficult to predict world events, analysts expect this pattern to continue until world issues are resolved and a sense of security is restored to markets, including the petroleum industry.

"If fuel prices weren�t regulated in this province, consumers and oil companies in Newfoundland and Labrador would be more open to market instability on a daily basis, whereas the people in the province know what the prices of petroleum products will be until November 15," noted Mr. Saunders.


The PPPC has analyzed the results of a provincial Marine Tanker Freight Cost Study, which it had commissioned this year as part of its research mandate into the pricing components of regulated fuels.

The details of this report will be released at a press conference at the Glynmill Inn in Corner Brook Tuesday, October 15 at 10:00 a.m.; however, the maximum regulated fuel prices for the next 30 days will reflect one of the recommendations contained in the report.

The commission determined that the conclusions of the study were sufficient to warrant an adjustment in prices for Zone 6 (Corner Brook / Bay of Islands, Deer Lake, Gros Morne as far north as Lobster Cove).

Effective October 15, there will be a one cent per litre before-tax reduction for gasoline, diesel and home heating fuels in this zone, which will bring Zone 6 on par with Zone 1 (Avalon Peninsula).

As well, further examination of pricing zones adjacent to Zone 6 has led the commissioner to decide that a temporary downward adjustment of 0.5 cpl be implemented for Zone 5 (Springdale - Green Bay / Triton / Baie Verte Peninsula), Zone 7 (Stephenville / Port au Port / Codroy Valley / Channel Port aux Basques / Burgeo), Zone 7a (Ramea) and Zone 8 (Northern Peninsula � Lobster Cove / Gros Morne / Bellburns).

Mr. Saunders said a further comprehensive analysis of land transport and distribution costs for petroleum products in all provincial zones will be necessary before consideration is given to any further changes. The entire details of the study will be released at the press conference in Corner Brook.

1. Automotive Fuels - Maximum Retail Pump Prices - Effective Oct. 15, 2002 
2. Heating Fuels - Residential Propane - Maximum Tank Wagon Prices - Effective Oct. 15, 2002
3. Heating Fuels - Maximum Tank Wagon (or ** Tank Farm) Prices - Effective Oct. 15, 2002

Media contact:

Michelle Hicks
Communications Officer
Petroleum Products Pricing Commission
Tel: (709) 489-8837
Cell: (709) 486-4789

2002 10 15                                      11:35 a.m.

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