We’ve got less than a week to go before the Department of Energy (DoE) makes March’s petrol and diesel prices official across South Africa. According to the Central Energy Fund’s latest round of predictions, it’s not looking so good for either petrol or diesel drivers. But we’ll get to that. Today, we actually have some good news sprinkled in, however minor it may be. Anything to help offset next week’s expected price hikes is good in our books.
The “Good” News
Finance minister Enoch Godongwana says the National Treasury will not increase the General fuel levy and Road Accident Fund levy this year. Meaning that the current General Fuel levy remains at 18% of the retail fuel price. The Road Accident Fund levy is also unchanged, sticking to 10% that was introduced last year.
The news came via the finance minister’s annual budget speech, held yesterday, 22 February. Godongwana went on to say that there would be a tax rebate on diesel, specifically aimed at food manufacturers that are struggling to keep up with the ever-growing costs of running multiple generators throughout the day and night. This should, in theory, keep food prices from rising quite as fast as they are at the moment, and slow down the country’s overall inflation rate.
“To ease the impact of the electricity crisis on food prices, the refund on the Road Accident Fund levy for diesel used in the manufacturing process, such as for generators, will be extended to manufacturers of foodstuffs. This takes effect from 1 April 2023 for two years,” he said.
The Bad News
Despite the National Treasury’s overwhleming generosity, there’s still the matter of the petrol and diesel price increase. And if the Central Energy Fund’s (CEF) predictions are correct (and they usually are), petrol drivers could be in for a rough couple of weeks in the month of March. Diesel drivers may also feel a knock – but one that’s reletively easier to manage.
Here are your petrol price predictions for March 2023 (data captured 22 February):
- Petrol 95: increase of 122 cents per litre (R1.22)
- Petrol 93: increase of 127 cents per litre (R1.27)
- Diesel 0.05%: increase of 27 cents per litre (R0.27)
- Diesel 0.005%: increase of 28 cents per litre (R0.28)
- Illuminating Paraffin: increase of 16 cents per litre (R0.16)
It’s worth mentioning that these prices are not official. The CEF makes these predictions based on the current price of refined oil and the US Dollar/Rand exchange needed to purchase it. The real decision is left with the Department of Energy at the end of every month once it has accounted for all possible fluctuations.
With only six days left before the government’s new prices reflect at the pumps, it’s highly unlikely that the DoE’s decision will be one that the country is happy with. Your best bet is to fill up before Wednesday, 01 March.