An initiative by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) that will see supermarkets stick to helping shoppers with lower grocery pricing instead of subsidising fuel offers is music to the ears of all our small, petrol filling stations, according to Brian Madderson, chairman of the Petrol Retailers Association. "These retailers are facing extinction by the aggressive price discounting from the ’big four’ UK supermarkets," he said.

"In direct contrast it appears to their counterparts in Australia, supermarkets discounting fuel is one of the many issues that the UK’s Office of Fair Trading (OFT) turned its back on when it published findings last month, following its ’call for information’.

Madderson continued: "Our members have provided data to the OFT showing that fuel discounts lead to higher in-store grocery pricing which is clearly to the detriment of all those shoppers not buying fuel at that store. Instead, supermarkets should help shoppers with the lower grocery pricing as they will be forced to do in Australia and not distort the competitive process in the fuels market. We provided evidence to the OFT that each new supermarket forecourt takes away the entire fuel volume from five existing independents in that area.

"This directly leads to local job losses and reduction in local amenities."