Cape Town – While motorists are paying the highest price yet for a litre of petrol, an economist warns that further hikes can be expected.
Economist Chris Hart said consumers should brace for another increase owing to the high price oil.
“International oil prices have been relatively strong at the beginning of this month and it does suggest that there could be a further increase next month if international oil prices continue to rise,” Hart was quoted as saying, according to EWN.
Motorists have endured a series of petrol price hikes since the year started.
All grades of fuel increased by 32 cents per litre at midnight on Tuesday, while diesel increased by 33c and paraffin by 25c.
In July motorists had to fork out an extra 84 cents a litre for petrol and 78 cents a litre for diesel.
South African fuel prices are calculated on an import parity basis.
The formula is based on fuel prices at refineries in Italy, Singapore and the Arabian Gulf.
Feeling the pinch
Commuters are also bracing for an increase in taxi costs because of the soaring petrol price.
The South African National Taxi Council (Santaco) told the SABC that the latest petrol hike will impact on its operation.
“We request and announce that taxi commuters need now to expect an increase of not more than 20% from what they are paying presently”, said Santaco spokesperson Bafana Magagula.
The increase will plunge highly indebted South Africans even deeper into the debt spiral, warned Debt Rescue.
It is the middle class and lower income earners who will bear the brunt, said CEO Neil Roets in a statement on Friday.
“While the increase in the price of fuel is going to hit everybody hard, it is going to push large numbers of newly arrived middle class consumers back into poverty,” said Roets.