We got lucky over the past few months, but there’s no guarantee that luck will hold. South Africa’s fuel price had fallen, a little, kinda, over April and May. April’s dip was thanks to a little tax holiday handed out by SA’s government. Even then, the price of petrol increased a little. In May, the (small) dip was a result of that same holiday. Well, folks, that holiday is just about over.
The upshot is that South African motorists must brace for a possible walloping. The R1.50 reduction in the general fuel levy (GFL) was only supposed to remain in effect until 31 May. There’s currently no sign of an extension from our government’s side. And then there’s the likely fuel price increase as a result of external factors to consider.
Gimme fuel, gimme fire…
So the price of petrol and diesel is supposed to increase by at least R1.50/litre, as government takes its slice back. But the Central Energy Fund, those folks who keep an eye on fuel prices and give us estimated increases (or decreases, sometimes), also have a spot of bad news in store.
Currently, fuel prices in SA are on track to increase by up to R1.70/litre. For petrol. Diesel users could well encounter a R2.00/litre increase early next month. Combine this with the expected snapping back of the GFL in South Africa, and we’re looking at massive increases.
Right now, the price of petrol in SA is R21.24. The current best-case sees that rising to R22.94 — give or take a few cents, since the Central Energy Fund isn’t spot-on this far out. The worst-case version sees April’s pricing leaping from R21.24 to R24.44/litre. That’s uncomfortably close to R25/litre, and well on its way to R30/litre.
Diesel is in an even worse boat, though the overall cost will be about the same. Having already encountered a substantial jump in April, the cost of Go-Juice might climb from R21.01/litre to R23.01/litre (if the GFL break sticks around) or R24.51 (if the government decides the country has had enough help). Neither scenario is especially appealing, but the cheaper devil would be preferred.