Facts about the Australian Transport Fuels Market

Facts about the Australian Transport Fuels Market

Publication date
01 Sep 2017
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AIP member companies provide very reliable supplies of fuel to the Australian market and:

  • represent around 90% of primary fuel supply to the Australian market, 
  • have decades of operational experience in Australia and Asia delivering high quality fuel to customers, 
  • have major investment in infrastructure/storage around Australia and throughout the supply chain, and 
  • have invested over $10 billion in the last decade in their refineries and supply chain infrastructure.


Australia does not have a transport fuel reliability or security problem.

  • Australia does not have a transport fuel reliability or security problem.
  • Australia’s transport fuels and crude oil are sourced from a wide diversity of sources.
  • There are highly flexible supply chains into/within Australia and varied/flexible shipping routes.
  • The industry has robust commercial stockholdings at least cost to motorists and major users while maintaining high supply reliability.
  • Commercial storage capacity in the Australian supply chain has increased in recent years and no long-term/widespread shortage of transport fuel supplies has occurred.
  • Australia’s compliance position with the IEA stock obligation largely,

Australian refinery closures have not affected supply reliability and security for transport fuels.

  • Refineries mainly use imported oil so “products on water have replaced crude on water”.
  • All AIP member companies continue to invest in supply infrastructure to support current and future demand for transport fuels.

Integration into the Asian market is the key to Australia’s supply security, not mandatory oil stocks.

  • According to the IEA, “Asia has become the unrivalled centre of the global oil trade” as the region draws in a rising share of the available crude from around the world.
  • Asia is the lowest cost source of alternative supply and has excess supply capacity.
  • Integration into this key market is in national/consumer interests, fuels self-sufficiency is not.
  • Large fuel volumes available in ships each month (including for diversion to where needed most around Australia) is more fundamental to our supply chain operation than mandatory stocks.
  • Mandatory oil stockholding would impose a very significant cost on Australians - regardless of whether the $6.8 billion price tag published by the Government is paid for by them or consumers.

Australia’s emergency response arrangements for transport fuel supply are robust.

  • The Government has flexible powers to respond to a major national or global emergency.

Alternative fuels can play a role in a diversified transport fuels mix, but the competitive market should determine that role. The market will transition to other fuel types when they are economic.

Energy and economic security issues are distinct from national security issues.

  • National security issues and scenarios should be considered as part of Defence planning and reviews and energy security assessed through the Energy White Paper process.