A Warrnambool taxi driver says the LPG price hike hasn’t come as a surprise as the Victorian taxi industry calls on the state government to raise fares.
Nanjing Night Net

The taxi industry says the rises in the price of LPG will drive the cost of running a cab up by $13,000 a year.

Warrnambool Radio Taxis director Steve Hardy told The Standard he had been expecting the increase.

“The only disappointment is the government put a subsidy on the installation of LPG tanks because of the clean fuel when they knew the cost of gas would increase,” he said.

VTA spokesman David Samuel said fares had not been raised in Victoria since 2008 and with pressures like rising fuel costs and a taxi driver shortage, drivers and operators were being pushed to the wall.

“The price of LPG has spiked in Victoria, rising by 34.6 per cent since December, with advice from the fuel industry suggesting that this will jump to 74.2 per cent by mid-year. This will have a devastating impact on our industry if fuel rises aren’t accounted for by an increase in taxi fares,” Mr Samuel said.

“Rises in LPG will translate directly to an increase in the cost of running a cab in Victoria per year of approximately $13,000 by the middle of this year.

“This will have a significant flow-on effect in an industry already struggling with a host of other issues, including driver shortages caused by insufficient remuneration.

“Like other transport businesses, fuel costs are the most significant input for the taxi industry. Unlike other businesses, there is no way for taxi owners to recoup changes in costs by raising the price of their service unilaterally.”

Taxi fares in Victoria are set centrally by the state government.

Last week, most Warrnambool petrol station LPG prices jumped from about 65 cents a litre to 75, while yesterday prices ranged from 73.9 cents a litre at APCO to 86.9 at Mobil.

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