PETROL price rip-offs are close to an end as Ministers plan to appoint a Pumpwatch regulator in a massive win for drivers.

Retailers would face pressure to end the huge gulf between what hard-up drivers pay at the pump and plunging wholesale costs under the plans.

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Petrol price rip-offs are nearing the end as MPs plan to appoint Pumpwatch regulator[/caption]

The move would mark a massive win for The Sun’s Keep It Down campaign which saw more than a decade of consecutive years of fuel duty freezes

Chancellor Jeremy Hunt and Business Secretary Grant Shapps are urgently looking at the matter to make pricing more transparent.

Officials are expected to report back by the end of February ahead of a decision on the matter could be made as early as the Budget in mid-March.

Campaigners believe the system could be voluntary but if savings not passed on after the first year then a full-on regulator would be brought in.

Garages that fail the price change criteria could even end up being ‘named and shamed’ if campaigners get their way.

The move would mark a massive win for The Sun’s Keep It Down campaign which saw more than a decade of consecutive years of fuel duty freezes – with a year-long 5p cut last March.

Campaigners say petrol would be up to 10p cheaper and diesel would be over 15p less expensive if Ministers give the green light.

Chancellor Jeremy Hunt received a letter signed by 30 MPs last month including ex-Home Secretary Priti Patel saying its implementation would restore confidence in the “opaque” system.

Petrol prices remain high partly due to the strength of the US dollar with crude oil being bought in the currency – meaning it costs more to get the same amount.

The import of diesel from Russia was also banned after the Ukraine invasion so supplies have to be found from elsewhere, with prices being pushed up.

Inflation across the world has also hiked prices with higher wages for hauliers, oil workers and machinery.

Tory MP Jonathan Gullis last night said: “Over the past 11 years, a Conservative government has frozen fuel duty and brought about two cuts to fuel duty.

“But what is quite clear there have been wholesalers who have not been passing on these savings to motorists, which Sun readers, Fair Fuel UK supporters, and I want to see happen.

“We need to stop this shameless profiteering and introduce PumpWatch.”

Howard Cox, founder of FairFuel, said: “I understand the machinery of Government is looking into how it should work.

UK’s drivers must also support this initiative to ensure pump pricing becomes honest, fair and transparent.

“Hopefully, the Budget will bring news of its progress because PumpWatch is an essential tool to lessen the cost of living crisis and reduce inflation.”

The government’s spending watchdog has estimated a 12p rise in fuel duty without any government intervention this Spring on the assumption the 5p cut will come to an end.

There has been speculation that Mr Hunt wants to extend the 5p cut for another year.

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