Petrol price hike pushes fuel past R20 per litre mark

By Jason Woosey for IOL

After a brief reprieve in January, South Africa’s fuel prices will once again move close to record levels in February, with 95 Unleaded petrol once again surpassing the R20 a litre mark in Gauteng.

On Monday, the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy said both grades of petrol would increase by 53 cents per litre, while low sulphur 50ppm diesel would rise by 79 c/l and 500ppm by 80 c/l.

This means that a litre of 95 Unleaded will cost R19.42 at the coast and R20.14 in the inland regions, where 93 Unleaded will rise to R19.89.

But how much more will a tank cost you from Wednesday, 2 February?

If you own a small hatchback like a Kia Picanto or Hyundai Atos, and assuming that you’ll be putting 30 litres of petrol into its 35 litre tank, then you’re looking at a cost of R582.60 at the coast and R596.70 inland, which is an increase of R15.90 over January. 35 litres in a Volkswagen Polo will set you back R679.70 (coast) and R696.15 (inland), which is R18.55 more than before.

The latest fuel price increases, while caused by surging international oil prices, come amid controversy surrounding the fuel taxes imposed on South African motorists. Taxes and levies add R6.11 to the cost of every litre of fuel sold in South Africa. According to The Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse (OUTA), the fuel levy increased by 116% between 2011 and 2021, while the Road Accident Fund contribution increased by 173%.

The Automobile Association has called for a review of the fuel pricing structure in South Africa, and its online #ReviewTheFuel petition has gained around 25 000 signatures so far.

“Our call is for the Minister of Finance to announce such a review in his Budget Speech in Parliament on 23 February as a first step towards mitigating against rising fuel costs effectively for the benefit of all South Africans,” the AA said.

 

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