Qld transport minister rejects calls for real-time fuel app

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Qld transport minister rejects calls for real-time fuel app

'Unnecessary red tape'.

Queensland’s transport minister Mark Bailey has rebuffed calls for the state government to introduce a real-time fuel price app to help motorists save money at the bowser.

The opposition LNP announced on Tuesday that it would introduce legislation requiring all petrol retailers to reveal their pricing should it win the 2020 Queensland election.

It followed calls from the state's peak motoring body RACQ for the government to adopt real-time fuel monitoring. Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk on Monday had said there were no plans to introduce an app or comparison website.

“Under our 'fight for fairer fuel' plan we will make retailers publish their prices in real time, and the date and time from which the price will be applied,” opposition leader Deborah Frecklington said.

“This data will be available to third parties who want to build apps to inform Queensland motorists of the cheapest prices.”

Bailey weighed into the debate this afternoon, labelling such a scheme unnecessary “bureaucratic red tape”.

“The LNP’s knee-jerk pledge to have a state-run website and create a new layer of bureaucratic red tape will do nothing to bring down petrol prices and only duplicate market-based services," he said.

He pointed to real-time fuel monitoring apps like MotorMouth and Gas Buddy, which use crowdsourcing to generate prices for consumers.

State-backed real-time fuel price monitoring schemes have been set up in other jurisdictions, including New South Wales and the Northern Territory.

NSW introduced its real-time fuel price comparison website FuelCheck, which has since become an app, in August 2016, while the NT unveiled an almost identical website last November.

Both sites are backed by mandatory fuel price reporting legislation, and make pricing information available as open data so the information can be used in third-party apps.

The Australian competition regulator last year found that Brisbane motorists could save up to $68 million at the bowser each year if real-time fuel monitoring websites were used to avoid routine price hikes.

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