Record fuel price increase announced ahead of long weekend

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Astron Energy's Cape Town refinery supplies Caltex petrol stations.
Astron Energy's Cape Town refinery supplies Caltex petrol stations.

Minister of Mineral Resources and Energy Gwede Mantashe announced a raft of fuel price increases on Thursday evening, with 93 unleaded petrol increasing by 95 cents per litre and 95 unleaded petrol increasing by 100 cents per litre, pushing the price firmly into the territory of R17.00 per litre.

The announcement exceeded projections from the Automobile Association, which said this week that it expected a record increase of 73 cents per litre. The fuel price increase will take effect from 7 April.

A statement from the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy said the Rand depreciated against the United States Dollar during the past month compared to February, leading to higher contributions to the basic fuel prices of petrol.

"The dramatic price fluctuations are attributable to a variety of events, including low US crude oil inventory figures, the expected increased economic activity in the US due to the approval of their economic stimulus and a vessel stuck in the Suez Canal causing a delay for all cargo containers including oil tankers," the statement said.

The cost of high sulphur diesel will see a 65.20 cents per litre increase while 0.005% sulphur diesel will increase by 63.20 cents per litre and wholesale illuminating paraffin will increase by 34.80 cents per litre.

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