Owners of gas stations in the South Shore are more greedy than those on the North Shore. For a few months, the liter of regular gasoline is more expensive in Lévis than in Quebec City, Le Soleil noted . It is not uncommon to see deviations of up to 5 ¢.
In the week of February 27 to March 3, the average gasoline sold at gas stations in Quebec between 103.1 and 105.8 cents, according to data from the Régie de l’Énergie. For the same period, on the other side of the Pierre-Laporte bridge, motorists were paying their gasoline at the pump between 106.1 ¢ and 107.5 ¢.
For Monday and Tuesday, Quebec retailers posted an average of one liter of gasoline between 102.4 ¢ and 103.9 ¢. Meanwhile, in Lévis, prices were 105.4 ¢ to 106.9 ¢. On Tuesday, when the Sun was passing , even the retail giant Costco was trading its gasoline at a higher price on the South Shore side, at 103.5 ¢ compared to 101.4 ¢ at its trade located on the South Shore, Avenue Watt, in Sainte-Foy.
At CAA-Quebec, it is not possible to provide reasons justifying the cost differences between the two shores. According to the organization, the realistic price for gasoline in the Capitale-Nationale is 106.9 ¢ per liter and the average price at the pump is 103.0 ¢. The realistic price includes the acquisition cost of 103.7 ¢ and the average retail margin of the last 52 weeks, or 3.2 ¢.
On the Chaudiere-Appalaches side, which includes, among others, Lévis, the acquisition cost is 103.8 ¢, or one-tenth of a further cent. This narrow gap between the two regions is explained by “fuel transportation costs,” said CAA-Quebec spokesperson Philippe Saint-Pierre.
So how do you explain the difference in prices up to 5 ¢ per liter between the two cities separated by less than 50 kilometers?
“These are business decisions of retailers,” says Mr. Saint-Pierre. “The acquisition cost is similar. We are not in an outlying area that will get a fuel tax rebate. […] When we look at the Quebec side, last week, we had retail margins in the negative. On Monday we were at 2.4 ¢ and Tuesday at 1.7 ¢. There is a serious competition on the North Shore. This allows consumers to have a very advantageous price, “he continues.
According to the spokesman, the opening of the three supercostries Costco on the territory is partly responsible for the price struggle of recent years. However, the impact of the Costco effect appears to be less present in Lévis.
“To offer a lower cost, there may be stations in the region that have agreements [with their supplier]. This is one of the assumptions, but there is no clear answer to explain the difference in price, “he said.
The same is true of petrol station owners. Serge Leveille, owner of a Petro-Canada in Saint-Henri, near Lévis, was not able to explain the phenomenon. On Tuesday he sold his liter of gasoline at 105.9 ¢.
“I am not in a position to say what is happening in the region. Are there any agreements between the contractors and the oil companies on the North Shore? I do not know … “he says. “It’s certain that when your business is close to a Costco, you have to have special agreements, otherwise you’ll close.”
Several retailers have refused to answer questions from the sun .
In February, a study by Desjardins Group said gasoline prices were set to climb in 2017. The report’s economist Mathieu Anjou is forecasting an average increase of about 5 ¢ per liter over the next few months, To about $ 1.15 per liter in Canada.