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Fuel price showing new year gloom

17 December 2013:

The AA’s prediction on the petrol price in January

South African motorists could start 2014 with a shock, as the fuel price is set for a steep hike. This is according to the Automobile Association of South Africa (AA) which was commenting on preliminary data issued by the Central Energy Fund for the first half of December.

“International petroleum prices have eased slightly so far in December,” said AA Head of Public Affairs, Graeme Scala, “but possible relief may come from the exchange rate, which was averaging around R10.20 to the US dollar at the beginning of the month but has been in decline since then, with a daily spike to R10.50 on December 6,” he added. 

The average exchange rate has continued to creep up to the R10.30 mark, which has translated into across-the-board under-recoveries in the fuel price. Using current data, diesel is showing a 31 c / litre increase, with petrol between 31 and 33 c / litre dependant on grade. Users of illuminating paraffin will be hit particularly hard if current trends continue – the current predicted increase is 39 c / litre.

“Unless there is a substantial turnaround in the exchange rate before the end of December, South African motorists will have to brace themselves for more pain at the pumps,” Scala concluded.

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