Wallets hit hard as Forbes petrol prices soar to new heights

UPDATE: Petrol prices have surged past $2 a litre at some petrol stations in Forbes on Friday, with the lowest E10 price being $1.99.9 per litre and as much as $2.21.9 for diesel.

THURSDAY: Skyrocketing petrol prices have surged to new heights in Forbes, with some service stations charging $1.97.9 per litre for E10 and as much as $2.20 for diesel.

Russia's invasion of Ukraine and ongoing supply issues are continuing to drive up prices, putting the squeeze on businesses and everyday drivers.

NRMA spokesperson Peter Khoury said the current prices are record highs and will likely continue rising.

"Unfortunately, we do expect average prices to get to over $2 a litre and it's basically driven off what we've been seeing globally," he said.

"They are record prices nationally."

Mr Khoury said the rising costs will hit regional communities where "diesel is king" particularly hard.

"Farming, mining, agriculture, and in addition to that, people in regional areas tend to drive larger vehicles," he said.

One potential outcome from the rising cost could be electric vehicles becoming more appealing to everyday users, Mr Khoury suggested.

"Australians are notoriously slow at changing up their vehicles but we will see more electric vehicles on the road in the years to come," he said.

"That's going to be a good thing, because the electricity that we charge our vehicles from is Australian made and that fuel that we import is not."

RISING: This graph shows fuel prices up to March 6 - there'll be another sharp increase next week. Picture: AUSTRALIAN INSTITUTE OF PETROLEUM

RISING: This graph shows fuel prices up to March 6 - there'll be another sharp increase next week. Picture: AUSTRALIAN INSTITUTE OF PETROLEUM

Agriculture Minister David Littleproud was questioned yesterday on the likelihood of the excise being lowered to provide fuel price relief.

Senator Rex Patrick from South Australia suggested the excise should be halved to provide relief to motorists.

Mr Littleproud pointed out that farmers do get a rebate or a concession on diesel used on farm but ordinary motorists are unlikely to see anything similar.

"We appreciate the soaring costs of fuel, and obviously the conflict in Ukraine hasn't helped," he said.

"And while I see that some of the minor parties are floating these ideas, say it's popular, someone's got to pay for it. There's a big bill when you do that.

"There are international levers at play here that are outside our control, and that's the challenging part that we're trying to work through," Mr Littleproud said.

"We've put out a lot of support during COVID-19; $92 billion worth of JobKeeper just to keep the economy going. And our economy is going well, but these costs of living pressures are high.

"And I know the Treasurer and the Expenditure Review Committee are looking through every line and how they can reduce those living costs, not just on fuel, but on childcare, electricity.

"And we've had some big wins on that, but we understand that the pressures that are there, and we're going to continue to work through that."

The excise raises about $11 billion in tax annually, which is used to fix roads.