The federal government threatened today to go into retail fuel sales if private gas station owners don’t charge “fair prices.”
President López Obrador called on gas station owners and fuel distributors to act responsibly and not be “abusive” towards their customers by charging them excessive prices.
The president said his words amounted to a “friendly invitation” for fuel wholesalers and retailers to review their profit margins.
If they don’t listen, López Obrador continued, “we would think about creating a group of [gas] stations . . . not a lot, just enough so that fuel is sold at a fair price.”
Arturo Herrera, an undersecretary at the Secretariat of Finance and Public Credit (SHCP), said that profit margins for regular, premium and diesel fuels were 55%, 84% and 36% respectively.
López Obrador said that there is a range of tools, such as mobile apps, that consumers can use to locate the cheapest place to buy fuel.
He also said he will announce at his morning press conference every Monday which gas stations are selling the cheapest and the most expensive fuel.
The leftist leader reiterated his pledge that his government won’t increase fuel or electricity prices beyond the annual inflation rate.
The Mexican retail fuel market was opened up to private and foreign companies as a result of the previous government’s energy reform.