Finance Minister Enoch Godongwana has confirmed that his department have stepped in with a set of emergency measures to help tame the ludicrous petrol price increase set for April 2022.
Petrol price increase ‘to be eased by government’
Speaking in Parliament earlier on Thursday, Godongwana revealed a set of temporary interventions that will cushion the blow of soaring fuel costs over the next couple of months. The conflict between Russia and Ukraine has sent the oil market haywire, harming global supply chains in the process.
With the cost of living increasing at rapid rates, a nightmare on the forecourts was the last thing any of us needed. Prior to war breaking out in Europe, record-high petrol prices were already stalking the South African consumer – and Vladimir Putin’s act of aggression helped kicked the problem into higher gear.
Why is the petrol price increase for April so big?
As an import-reliant country, South Africa has been brutally punished by these increasing costs. Without intervention, some motorists could have paid up to R24-per-litre for their petrol from the first week of April. However, the ANC has finally decided to take a stand – and it’s better late than never.
Godongwana also noted that China’s zero-COVID policy – which still encourages tough lockdowns in major cities – was having a direct impact on supply chains and businesses worldwide, too.
How the government plans to tackle fuel costs
The Finance Minister introduced relief measures in two stages. First, he went with the temporary package. The general fuel levy will be reduced by R1.50-per-litre, over the next two months. That amount will be knocked off of both petrol and diesel prices when new costs for April are announced in the next few days.
“To mitigate the impact of a petrol price increase, government proposes a temporary reduction of R1.50 on the general fuel levy, from April and May 2022. This will reduce the levy down to R2.30-per-litre for petrol, and it will support South Africans as we adjust to a ‘new reality’ of higher petrol prices over the next two months.”
Godongwana also explained a set of long-term measures, which will come into effect by June 2022:
- A reduction of the basic fuel price by three-cents per litre.
- An introduction of a price cap on petrol, meaning retailers can sell BELOW market price.
- There will be a review of diesel pricing in South Africa.
- Interventions will be considered to ease paraffin costs, too.