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Suspending competition laws will help

A suspension to competition law to assist with fuel supplies would be “very welcome”, Brian Madderson of the Petrol Retailers Association has said.

Speaking on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, Mr Madderson said that in Northern Ireland “there does not seem to be a problem at all with supply and retail outlets, so the problem is confined to the mainland”.

He said: “With the problem of dry sites, we’re really talking more about the concentrated urban areas than we are the rural areas at this stage”.

He said dry sites “are being restocked at the present time but the number of tankers that they’re receiving are below the number that they need to be properly restocked at their normal level of between 40% and 50%”.

A suspension in competition law, he said, “possibly allows the suppliers to put fuel into their competitors’ sites … and if so, the increased flexibility that that would give the supplying industry would be very welcome”.

He added: “It will be complicated.”

Asked if the move is a game-changer, he said: “No, it’s just one of the helps.”

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