Cape Town – There is no reprieve for consumers about the unchanged fuel price as they are already struggling to make ends meet amid mounting consumer debt.
The petrol price will remain the same come Wednesday May 6, according to the Department of Energy (DOE). However the price of diesel and other fuels will decrease.
Diesel will decrease by 5 cents/litre (c/l), illuminating paraffin will decrease by 7 c/l with Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) dropping 17 cents per kilogram c/kg.
The DOE said the main factors contributing to these price adjustments were the average increase in the crude oil and petrol prices internationally and the slightly weaker Rand during April 2015 compared to March 2015.
No breather at the pumps
The South African National Consumer Union (Sancu) said every price decrease helps, particularly to those who have to count every cent, but this time the impact will be very limited.
“The tiny decrease in the diesel price will save a rand or two when filling up, but is unlikely to have any other effects on consumers,” deputy Sancu chairperson Clif Johnston told Fin24.
The price decreases in illuminating paraffin and LPG will have a similar small effect, he said.
Debt Rescue CEO Neil Roets said consumers would have benefited a lot from a reduction of the fuel price.
“While the fuel price is to remain unchanged, the increase in the prices of almost everything else, including electricity and food is going to hit the consumer even harder.”
He told Fin24 that the previous price hikes filtered through to the prices of goods and services.
“People are struggling and we know from the latest reserve bank figures that total consumer debt now tops R1.427 trillion.”
A look at the petrol prices for the year
In April, the price of petrol went up by up to R1.62. At the coast 95 ULP & LRP increased by R1.60, while in Gauteng it went up by R1.62. 93 ULP & LRP increased by R1.56 and R1.54 more in Gauteng and the coast respectively.
In March petrol went up by 96c/litre, while diesel rose by 74c and paraffin by 73c.
In February the retail prices of both grades of petrol dropped by 93c/litre and the maximum retail price for LPG tumbled a massive R1.50c/kg.
In January motorists experienced some relief when prices dropped by R1.23 a litre for 95 octane petrol and R1.27/litre for 93 octane petrol.