Belfast Telegraph

Hurricane Harvey set to hit motorists in Northern Ireland with fuel prices predicted to rise

Fuel prices in Northern Ireland and across the UK are set to rise following the devastation caused by Hurricane Harvey to the Texan coast.

Representative group for independent petrol retailers the Petrol Retailers' Association (PAC) has warned prices could rise as early as next week.

Speaking to Sky News, spokesperson for the organisation Pete Williams said that there had been a 4p-per-litre increase in the wholesale cost of fuel over the past five days.

"The price of unleaded petrol will leapfrog diesel early next week, rising by up to 4p per litre as the impact of Storm Harvey and the shut-down of large refineries in the Gulf Coast drives up US demand for petrol imports," he said.

He put this down to one quarter of the refining capacity in the US remaining offline following Hurricane Harvey, meaning a shortfall of more than four million barrels a day, and a drop in crude oil production in the Gulf of Mexico of 13.5%.

To tackle this US oil traders have been asked to divert oil back towards the United States - meaning a reduced supply to Europe.

Fuel prices increased at the start of July for the first time in three months, although Northern Ireland remains the cheapest region in the UK for motorists.

According to RAC Fuel Watch, the most recent figures show that a litre of unleaded fuel in Northern Ireland at the end of July cost around 114p per litre.

Belfast Telegraph Digital

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