As SACCI we note the announcement by the Department of Energy that South Africa’s petrol price will rise by 74 cents a litre from Wednesday the 6th of March 2019, while the wholesale price of diesel will increase by up to 93 cents.
We acknowledge that global oil prices and the adverse ZAR/US$ exchange rate are mainly responsible for this price increase. Another fuel price increase is expected from the beginning of April due to tax hikes that come into effect, as announced by the Minister of Finance in his 2019 Budget Speech.
We are concerned that fuel price increases will lead to inflationary pressures to the economy, leading to potential interest rate increases and a further difficult environment for economic growth.
We acknowledge the Government’s efforts to reduce the sharpness of this negative impact by implementing the price increase in stages, with the first 20 cents coming into effect from the beginning of April 2019, and the remaining 9 cents a litre for petrol and 10 c/l for diesel coming into effect in June 2019. However, taken over a period the effect will still be negative.
We urge Government to make every endeavour to trim unnecessary, wasteful and reckless expenditure with an idea to reduce the various levies on the price of fuel.
This cost of energy input is already overtaxed. An economy whose energy input costs keep rising and are not commensurate with economic growth and job creation is bound to hit turbulence.
Contact: Mr Alan Mukoki 082 551 1159