Fuel price hike may raise taxi fares

2011-10-05 00:00

MOTORISTS will be forced to dig deep into their pocket with the increased fuel prices that come into effect this morning.

Motorist will spend an average of R10,24 per litre of petrol, the highest level in three years, said reports.

The Department of Energy attributed the increase to Brent crude oil prices, which have fluctuated between $104 and $118 per barrel during September, and the depreciation of the rand against the U.S. dollar.

The declining exchange rate has led to an increase in the basic fuel prices of 37,7 cents per litre for petrol, 39c/l for diesel and 38,4c/l for illuminating paraffin.

Businesses and motorists will be hit hard.

Colt Transporting chief executive officer Imtiaz Joosab said, “There isn’t much businesses can do because this petrol hike is going to affect each and every commodity.”

He told The Witness that his company will have to pass the increases on to its clients.

A courier company, Gran Gold Logistics, which operates 75 vehicles nationwide, said it will have to “tighten our belt and focus on increasing where we can”.

Gran Gold Logistics chief executive Mohammed Essa said he does not foresee any retrenchments any time soon.

The general secretary of the South African National Taxi Council (Santaco), Philip Taaibosch, said taxi fares could go up, possibly at the end of October or early in November.

“Our fare increase is not normally driven by the petrol price even though that’s the primary commodity we use,” he said.

“If it did, we would have had many increments in the past year and 2011,” Taaibosch said.

He told The Witness that taxi operators will not have it easy because the 37c/l increase is “excessive” and they will be carrying a heavy burden that will eventually force them to raise their fares.

There may be some relief for motorists next month — if the oil price continues its slight downward trend of the past week, falling to $104,42 yesterday.

Crude oil prices have fallen on the back of the faster-than-expected resumption in Libyan crude production, despite the global economic downturn, said analysts.

Austrian oil and gas giant OMV said it has received its first delivery of Libyan oil since production was halted in March.

• gabisile.ngcobo@witness.co.za

New fuel prices:

Petrol (95 ULP and LRP) will increase by 36.0 c/l;

Petrol (93 ULP and LRP) will increase by 37.0 c/l;

Diesel (0.05% sulphur) will increase by 35.0 c/l;

Diesel (0.005% sulphur) will increase by 37.0c/l;

IP (wholesale) will increase by 30.0 c/l;

Single Maximum National Retail Price (SMNRP) will increase by 40.0 c/l;

Maximum Retail Prices of LP Gas will increase by 62.0c/kg.

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