The Energy and Petroleum Regulatory Authority (EPRA) has for the fourth consecutive month increased the prices of fuel stacking up pressure on motorists who are already reeling from the hostile effects the Covid-19 pandemic has had on Kenya’s economy.
In Nairobi, the price of a litre of diesel has increased from Ksh. 115.18 to Ksh. 122.81 while a litre of super petrol will now cost motorists Ksh. 107.66 down from Ksh. 101.91. On the other hand, the price of a litre of kerosene in the capital has increased to Ksh. 97.85 up from Ksh. 92.44.
According to EPRA, the increase in fuel prices is as a result of the average landed cost of imported super petrol increasing by 14.97 per cent from USD 391.24 per cubic metre in January 2021 to USD 449.82 per cubic metre in February 2021 and diesel increasing by 12.29 per cent from USD 377.55 per cubic metre. In the period under review, kerosene increased by 13.26 per cent from USD 347.19 per cubic metre to USD 393.23 per cubic metre.
“Taking into account the weighted average cost of imported refined petroleum products the changes in the maximum allowed petroleum prices in Nairobi for a litre of Super Petrol, Diesel and Kerosene have increased by Ksh. 7.63, Ksh. 5.75 and Ksh. 5.41 respectively,” EPRA said in a statement.
The last time a litre of petrol retailed at such a high price was in November 2011. In December 2018 a litre of diesel traded at a similar price as per the current EPRA changes. The new fuel prices have been implemented despite the government’s effort to introduce a fuel subsidy plan, which excludes petrol, after collecting approximately Ksh. 12 billion from homes and businesses to steady diesel prices.
Experts reckon that the increase in fuel prices will have ramifications on the country’s manufacturing, agriculture and transport sectors which are dependent on fuel to conduct their businesses.
The rise in fuel prices is also anticipated to affect the cost of goods and services piling more pressure on Kenyans who are reeling from the effects of inflation in the country. Inflation stood at 5.8 per cent as at February 2021.
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