South African motorists are once again facing a fuel price crisis, with the cost of petrol and diesel set to rise substantially from Wednesday, September 6.
The South African Department of Mineral Resources and Energy (DMRE) has announced the official fuel prices for September, with both grades of petrol set to increase by R1.71 per litre, while diesel will go up by between R2.76 (50ppm) and R2.84 (500ppm).
What this means at the pumps is that a litre of 95 Unleaded petrol will now cost you R23.82 per litre at the coast and R24.54 in the inland regions, where 93 Unleaded now rises to R24.14.
This is the first time this year that petrol has breached the R24 mark in Gauteng. 95 ULP hit an all time record of R26.74 in July 2022, but had receded to R21.40 by the beginning of 2023.
The wholesale price of 500ppm diesel is set to rise to R22.33 at the coast and R23.05 inland from this month, with 50ppm increasing to R22.58 and R23.29 respectively. However, this excludes the retail margin for this unregulated fuel, which usually amounts to about R2 per litre, depending on the outlet. Thus 50ppm is now likely to cost over R25 in Gauteng and other inland regions.
According to the DMRE, fuel prices are rising as a result of stronger international oil prices as well as a weaker rand.
The oil prices added R1.35 to the petrol tally and R2.53 to diesel, while the rand made a smaller contribution to the fuel price mess, having depreciated from an average of R18.28 to the US dollar the previous month to R18.67 in August.
There was no Slate Levy contribution to September’s pricing structure, however the DMRE did approve a five cent per litre increase to accommodate wage increases for fuel station employees.
The Automobile Association warned that the upcoming fuel price increases will have negative consequences for all consumers, not just motorists, as the higher transportation costs will inevitably filter their way through to general inflation.
“Motorists will certainly feel the pinch in terms of higher prices at the pumps but consumers across the board can expect higher prices to all goods and services because of these hikes,” the association said.