RMI Petrol Retailers’ Association (PRA) has warned road users of an impending increase in the cost of fuel due to a huge rise in the price of oil.

The price of Brent Crude oil increased 10% in the past two weeks to US$116 a barrel, and while the UK has been absorbed by the Olympics, there has been no positive resolution to the geo-political tensions impacting supplies of crude oil from Iran and Syria.

Meanwhile, a US-led seasonal demand surge for road fuel is said to have encouraged new speculation by traders, with shippers reporting a 10-month high in the volume of gasoline being moved from Europe to the US.

Brian Madderson, PRA chairman, said: “This is really bad news for motorists and retailers alike. The full effect of the wholesale price increase of nearly 10ppl since late June has yet to be passed on at the pumps. Average pricing for petrol across the UK has now risen to 136ppl and could yet return to 140ppl by the end of August. This will affect the many families that have planned to take a post-Olympic holiday.”

The PRA is concerned that the government plans to levy the deferred duty rise of 3.02ppl on January 1, 2013 will be quickly followed by another planned rise of up to 2ppl on April 1, 2013. With VAT at 20% on both increases, government tax will push up pump prices by as much as 7ppl in just the first few months of the New Year.

Should there not be any downward correction to oil prices this Autumn, the spectre of 145-150ppl for petrol in early 2013 could return.

“This could damage our economic recovery and hit the Bank of England’s hopes for reducing inflation levels,” said Madderson. “Increasing fuel prices particularly impact the rural economies, low income earners and small businesses.

“Government must start planning now to freeze all further fuel tax increases during the term of their Parliament.”