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What to expect from next week’s petrol price adjustments

Petrol prices are expected to decrease in South Africa by a maximum of 15 cents per litre come May, whereas diesel prices are set to increase by up to 94 cents per litre.

This is according to month-end data released by the Central Energy Fund (CEF), reported on by BusinessTech.

The expected price adjustments for all types of fuel in South Africa in May are as follows:

  • Petrol 93 – Decrease of 14 cents per litre
  • Petrol 95 – Decrease of 15 cents per litre
  • Diesel 0.05% – Increase of 94 cents per litre
  • Diesel 0.005% – Increase of 89 cents per litre
  • Illuminating Paraffin – Increase of 82 cents per litre

The CEF report covers data affecting fuel prices from the start, up to 27 April.

However, it must be noted that the official fuel price adjustments take into account the entire April’s data, including slate levy and retail margin changes that are only determined at the end of the month.

Therefore, the final fuel price changes that are taking effect on 4 May could look significantly different.

Factors affecting South African fuel prices

South African fuel prices are affected by two main components, the rand/US dollar exchange rate and changes in international petroleum prices.

International petroleum prices are highly sensitive to oil prices, which rose sharply in 2022 and were partly responsible for the massive spikes in local fuel prices.

Similarly, the rand gained strength throughout the year off the back of rising international commodity prices, but most of the positive effects have since been overturned with the domestic currency fast approaching the R16/dollar mark, after hovering around R14.60/dollar at the start of April.

In an attempt to curb at least the worst of the expected increases, the South African government implemented a “tax holiday” on fuels that sees a reduction in the General Fuel Levy of R1.50 a litre until 31 May 2022.

This reduction is expected to save local motorists over R10 billion, but it remains a temporary measure.

With this in mind, the government outlined more permanent plans to potentially reduce the country’s fuel prices.

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