(Files by Dione Wearmouth-MyPGNow)

The Province has created new mandatory reporting requirements that come into effect today (Friday) for the wholesale fuel market.

This means B.C. drivers can expect more transparency and greater accountability when it comes to fuel prices.

The regulations from the Fuel Price Transparency Act (FPTA)  state that companies that import, purchase, store and distribute gasoline and diesel products intended for sale at retail stations will need to make regular reports starting in October.

The reports will include detailed information on fuel imports, storage capacity, bulk sales and wholesale prices.

“For years, British Columbians have felt like they are getting gouged when they fill up at the pump. That’s why our government asked our independent energy watchdog to do an investigation into gas prices,” said Bruce Ralston, Minister of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources.

The BC Utilities Commission’s (BCUC) investigation recovered a lack of competition and significant markups in the B.C. market, Ralston adds, “This results in British Columbians paying an extra $490 million per year.”

In March, the BCUC was named as the independent administrator of the FPTA and given the power to collect and publish data on fuel pricing in order to promote competition in the market.

“We know that from the BCUC’s investigation into gas prices that four companies control around 90% of the wholesale market in southern B.C.,” Ralston said. “By pulling back the curtain, the action we are taking today will help ensure the industry is held publicly accountable for unexplained markups and prices increases.”