Fuel: More price increases likely

Henry

Another rise in the price of fuel looks more and more likely.

Unaudited data from the Central Energy Fund indicates another significant increase in the price of both grades of petrol, as well as diesel and paraffin in March.

The Automobile Association (AA) warns that the expected increase will put even further financial pressure on South Africans who are already struggling to absorb previous increases.

According to the latest figures, the price of 95-octane petrol is expected to rise by R1.20 per litre, the price of 93-octane fuel is expected to increase by around R1.15 and diesel will possibly increase by around R1, 18 become more expensive. The price of paraffin may rise by an estimated 63c per litre.

Should these indications become reality, a liter of 95-octane fuel in the interior will cost you R24.44, while 93-octane petrol will cost you R24.01 per liter in the interior.

“The biggest driver of these increases is higher international product prices, as well as the rand’s weaker exchange rate against the dollar. Although the weaker rand contributes to a small margin for the under-recovery and expected price increases, the overall picture still looks bleak. Consumers will undoubtedly feel it,” says the AA.

At least there is light at the end of the tunnel too, says the AA. The general fuel tax levy and the levy on the Road Accident Fund will not be increased for the third consecutive year.

“The levies are usually announced in February and implemented in April, but the finance minister listened to calls from the AA and indicated in his February budget speech that this will not happen again this year.

“Although this is not exactly a saving, any increases would have put additional pressure on fuel prices.

“We once again welcome his decision not to raise these taxes this year.”

The official fuel adjustment comes into force on 6 March.