The Australian Institute of Petroleum today called on the Australian Automobile Association to support measures to combat the current fuel substitution racket.
AIP Executive Director, Mr Jim Starkey, said the Australian Automobile Association's opposition to excise uniformity on petroleum products would not help efforts to stop unscrupulous operators blending petrol with excise-free products.
"AIP's proposal is not intended to disadvantage genuine users of products such as toluene, and there are low cost mechanisms to deliver this outcome," Mr Starkey said.
"Our proposal is targeted at the racketeers who are cheating motorists by selling adulterated fuel, and depriving the Federal Government of a major amount of lost revenue."
"You've got to remove the huge bait - the 44 cpl tax differential that currently exists - if you are going to stop the cheats. This can only be achieved by equalising the excises on blendable products."
Mr Starkey said it appeared the AAA did not understand that the reform proposal covers not just toluene but other low excise petroleum products that might be used for fuel substitution purposes.
"AIP's proposal is to introduce uniform excise rates across a broad range of petroleum products so that unscrupulous operators do not simply move from toluene to some other product.
"We must grasp this opportunity to stop these practices dead in their tracks - our proposal will do that."
However, Mr Starkey welcomed AAA's call for national standards for petrol and diesel.
"AIP will work with the Government and other groups to achieve uniform national standards, but we are also committed to stamping out fuel substitution as a matter of urgency," Mr Starkey said.