On July 1, the Competition Council launched the “Fuel price monitor”, an online platform that allows consumers to find out the prices of large auto fuel distribution networks, with the main goal being to cheapen products.
The “fuel price monitor” is available both as a web app and as a mobile application (IOS and Android) downloadable from the App Store and Google Play and displays the prices for standard and premium fuels (petrol and diesel) at stations OMV Petrom, Mol, Rompetrol, Lukoil, Socar and Gazprom across the country, offering multiple search, sorting and filtering facilities.
“By accessing this price comparator for free, consumers can find out which are the nearest gas stations, geographic location and the services they offer, as well as the prices they make, so they have the choice to have important information on the existing offer on the market in the geographical area of interest. This will stimulate the competition, both through the price and through the services provided by the companies involved in the retail sale of motor fuels, “said Bogdan Chiriţoiu, president of the Competition Council.
According to him, the main purpose is to align prices at a low level.
“We have had very good cooperation from the companies involved, which has made the work easier for us. We want to make easier for the drivers to identify stations in their vicinity or on their route, which offer the fuel at the lowest price. Price variations are not high either between chains, but they exist and exist between stations in the same chain. This will lead to a downward convergence of prices, that is, those who practice higher prices will reduce them by a few percent. We want to put pressure on the retail price, “Chiriţoiu said.
At the end of December 2018, the Competition Council signed a contract with Maguay for the implementation of the application, the contract having a value of 1.42 million lei.
The Competition Council is also carrying out an analysis on the fuel market, launched after the price of petrol and diesel in Romania, without taxes, exceeded the European average. Following the investigation, which will be ready in the coming period, the Authority will come up with recommendations for increasing competition in the fuel market.
Chiriţoiu added that the second part of the project, related to food prices, will be launched in September.
In November 2016, the Competition Council launched www.monitorulpreturilor.info, a pilot project accessible to Bucharest and Ilfov, which offers the prices for 128 food products (64 generic product categories, for each of which two product prices are available individually, the cheapest and the best-selling).