Big diesel price cut announced, petrol hiked

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On Wednesday, the price of both 93 and 95 unleaded petrol will rise by 59c a litre, while diesel will fall by between R1.52 and R1.57 a litre. 

In Gauteng, 95 petrol will cost R23.46 a litre from Wednesday, compared to R20.29 a year ago - but down from a peak of R26.74 in July.

The Gauteng price of diesel, which reached a new record high (R25.49) in October, will fall to R23.92 a litre. A year ago, Gauteng's diesel price stood at around R17.93 per litre.

Illuminating paraffin will fall by 57c a litre on Wednesday, the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy announced.

Local fuel costs depend on global oil prices and the rand/dollar exchange rate, as oil is priced in the US currency.

The rand strengthened from an average of R18.11/$ in October to R17.43 in November, while the average Brent oil price fell from $90.79 to $88.77 per barrel. 

Oil prices plunged to their lowest levels since 2021 in November.  

READ | Why diesel prices aren't coming down that much

Oil came under renewed pressure as concerns grew about the outlook for the Chinese economy. While China’s daily Covid-19 cases hit new record highs, strict lockdowns are being enforced, which will hit China's economic growth.

"Petrol prices increased due to higher demand by motorists travelling for the Thanksgiving season in the US amid limited supply emanating from the Russia Ukraine conflict. Increased demand resulted in a decrease of gasoline inventories and higher prices," the department said.

"Refiners are producing more middle distillates, such as diesel, illuminating paraffin and gas to meet extra winter demand in the Northern Hemisphere and consequently producing less petrol."

Government also approved an increase of 21.26 c/l in the annual margin adjustments for the industry on petrol and a net increase of 0.67 c/l on diesel from this week. This included a 5.5c/l increase in the petrol price to accommodate wages increase for forecourt employees following an agreement in the Motor Industry Bargaining Council.

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