Petrol prices plunge but the taxman takes 64pc
Car fuel prices have dropped to their lowest level in almost 18 months, according to an AA Ireland survey.
The drop is due to a global fall in the cost of crude oil as a result of greater supply.
AA said the fall was no thanks to the State which takes 64pc of the cost of a litre of petrol in taxes. It said pump prices were "excessively taxed".
A litre of petrol is now 132.9c countrywide, the lowest price it has been since August 2017.
Diesel costs an average of 127.9c per litre, the lowest price recorded by the AA since April of last year.
Fuel prices trended downwards for the second successive month, after the previous year was largely dominated by high fuel costs.
AA Ireland director of consumer affairs Conor Faughnan said many drivers had become resigned to what he called unrelenting price rises last year.
"So it is certainly reassuring for motorists to see prices trending in the opposite direction to start the new year.
"However, it's important to remember that we are not seeing this drop as the result of an act of kindness from Government or an easing of taxes, but as a result of international factors which are always vulnerable to reversing in the opposite direction."
Mr Faughnan said "excessive tax placed on both petrol and diesel means motorists are still paying more than they should be for their fuel".
The AA estimates that 64.42pc of the cost of each litre of petrol and 57.71pc sold in Ireland is made up of various taxes.
Crude oil prices were as high as $85 (€74) last year, but have come down as to as low as $55 (€48) this year.