Fuel prices at filling stations in the UK are currently higher than they should be in comparison with wholesale costs, with the exception of Northern Ireland, according to the RAC.

The motoring organisation reported that the UK average diesel price per litre, at 151.5p, was 10p higher than it should be, given an average in Northern Ireland of 141.9p, while a litre of petrol was at a UK average of 146.28p, versus 141.1p in Northern Ireland.

It said average retailer margins were currently 16p on diesel, and 14p on petrol, versus 9p and 10p respectively in Northern Ireland.

On top of this, the RAC said the UK had seen Europe’s highest diesel prices for the past seven weeks, with a litre currently 8p higher here than next-most-expensive Finland, and 20p above the EU average.

The organisation suggested the upcoming General Election meant there was little political focus on the current high margins, with wholesale costs having been falling since April.

RAC head of policy Simon Williams said: “While there has been much focus on fuel since the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) concluded the biggest retailers had overcharged drivers by £900m in 2022, margins are once again staying persistently high – and drivers are paying the price.

“Having monitored prices for so long we believe there’s no good reason for retailers in Great Britain not cutting their prices at the pumps far further. We can only think they’re hoping no one will notice due to the distraction of the General Election.

“We hope that the CMA is aware of what is going on and will use this to bring retailers into line as soon as it’s able to – something which is so desperately needed given drivers in Northern Ireland are paying so much less for the very same fuel.”