New record-high diesel price, petrol also pricier

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On Wednesday, the price of unleaded petrol (both 93 and 95), will increase by 51c a litre, while diesel will rise by R1.43 a litre.

This will push the Gauteng price of diesel to R25.49 a litre - a new record high. A year ago, Gauteng's diesel price stood at around R17.20 per litre.

In Gauteng, 95 petrol will cost R22.87 a litre from Wednesday, compared to R19.54 a year ago - but down from a peak of R26.74 in July.

Illuminating paraffin will increase by 77c a litre, the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy announced on Friday.

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

The rand weakened from an average of R17.55/$ in September to R18.11 in October, while the average Brent oil price increased from $89.79 to $92.41 per barrel.

This was as a result of the oil producer group OPEC+ cutting its oil output. In addition, China eased its Covid-19 lockdown restrictions, which increased fuel demand.

"The high demand and continued low supply of diesel led to a higher increase of diesel prices compared to petrol," the department said.

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

Earlier this month, Bloomberg reported that diesel markets are "flashing signs of chaos", with shortages in Europe and America.

This was due to a prolonged strike at French oil refineries, while the US has record low diesel inventory levels for this time of year.

In recent months, Europe - which produces more petrol than it needs - has been struggling with securing diesel. The invasion of Ukraine and subsequent sanctions stopped diesel flows from Russia. This has increased prices as European countries scramble to find alternative diesel sources.

In South Africa, continuing problems with railways have increased truck deliveries, fuelling the local demand for diesel. A shortage of diesel supplies has also contributed to load shedding, as it hobbled Eskom's efforts to feed its emergency generators.

The maximum LP gas retail price will increase by 98c/kg on Wednesday.

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