Madrid.—The Balearics is the region of the country with the highest costs for petrol - at an average of 1.431 euros a litre - and diesel, at 1.366 euros per litre, consumers' organisation “OCU” said yesterday after producing a survey of 7'000 petrol stations across the country.

In stark contrast, Navarre is the region with the cheapest price for diesel in Spain selling at 1.282 euros per litre, whilst Huesca has the lowest petrol prices averaging out at 1.359 euros per litre.

The OCU report also suggests that the choice of filling station can impact on spending as differences in brand of fuel can make prive vary by up to 4% at any one time. This translates into a saving of 5.5 cents per lite and an average of 2.75 euros per fill-up.

Research showed that nationally, Alcampo has the cheapest chain of filling stations where diesel is selling at an average of 1.302 euros per litre, followed by Eroski and Avia. The same is true for these companies with regard to the lowest petrol prices. The dearest stations in diesel are Petrocat, Meroil and Carrefour. The OCU report said that although the fuel supply business was an essentially free market sector, the differences between filling stations wasn't as great as might be expected. Researchers said the average price for diesel in Spain is 1.316 euros a litre and 1.389 euros a litre for petrol.

OCU was able to show that government tax on fuel to help pay for the price of the national health service has increased the price of fuel by 5 cents per litre. There are however four regions of the country which haven't applied this tax: the Basque Country, Navarre, Aragon and La Rioja. A litre of petrol has gone up by 1.92 percent over the past week so that it is now selling nationally at an average of 1.43 euros a litre, while diesel prices have increased by 2.99% to an average of 1.38 euros per litre. Comparing prices to the same week in 2011, petrol and diesel prices have increased by 7.18 and 7.73% respectively. Petrol first topped the 1.4 euros per litre mark on 20th February this year.

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