Irving Oil Ltd. asked for increases ranging between 22 per cent and 25 per cent in the wholesale margins. The EUB approved an 8.5 per cent increase. (CBC)

New Brunswick drivers will start paying more for their gasoline, diesel and heating oil on Thursday following an Energy and Utilities Board ruling on wholesale price margins.

The Energy and Utilities Board decision on Saturday granted Irving Oil Ltd. an increase of 8.5 per cent on wholesale petroleum. This will add 0.5 cents a litre to the price of gas, diesel and heating oil.

David Young, an official with the energy regulator, said the approved increase in wholesale margins will be added to the cost when the regulated maximum price is set on Thursday.

"So as of midnight on Thursday, the new margin will be in effect. And so this is a margin for the wholesale portion of the industry, generally the companies that take the gas from the refineries to the retailers," he said.

While it was Irving Oil Ltd. that applied to the board for the increase, all retailers are eligible for the higher wholesale rates and will raise their prices.

Irving Oil had originally applied for a 23 per cent increase in its New Brunswick wholesale petroleum margins last spring.

Irving Oil had argued in front of the regulatory board the wholesale margins, currently six cents per litre for gasoline and diesel and five cents for heating oil, hadn't budged since the adoption of petroleum price regulation in 2006 and have been heavily eroded by inflation.