The cost of fuel, already at record levels and rising, could soon be forced higher in 121 areas across the UK due to the PS7bn acquisition of Morrisons by an US private equity company The consumer watchdog stated.Morrisons Petrol Station.The Competition and Markets Authority opened an investigation in January over the chain’s purchase of its parent company Clayton, Dubilier & Rice (CD&R), examining aspects such as the possibility of a decrease of competition between the forecourts that are fueled by petrol.
With the price of fuel expected to increase further if war in Ukraine lasts for a longer time and the CMA discovered that the acquisition could cause more problems for motorists.
CD&R has already acquired the huge petrol station Motor Fuel Group (MFG) and also won a long auction to purchase the Bradford-based Morrisons on October.MFG has 921 petrol stations throughout England, Scotland and Wales with a variety of brands, and Morrisons manages 339 petrol stations in its supermarkets.The regulator expressed concerns about the 121 areas in which MFG and Morrisons both have forecourts . They could have to contend with “limited competition” from other players following the merger.
Colin Raftery, a senior director of mergers at CMA stated: “Prices for petrol and diesel have recently reached records, which makes it more crucial to not allow an absence or competition in the market to cause it more difficult.
“We’re worried that this merger could result in higher costs for motorists in certain parts of the nation. If CD&R and Morrisons are able to resolve these issues, then we don’t have to conduct an extensive investigation of the deal.”
In the real world it could be CD&R offering petrol stations to customers in regions in which the CMA thinks that consumers will be negatively affected.
Petrol reached a new high this week. The figures from the data company Experian Catalist show the average cost per litre of petrol on UK petrol stations on Tuesday, was 167.3p and diesel cost 179.7p.
Experts have suggested that the ongoing war in Ukraine could result in gasoline prices soaring to PS2.50 and diesel could be as high as PS3. In the name of chancellor Rishi Sunak reduced the taxes on petrol by 5p in his spring statement on Wednesday.
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