Economists: Expect petrol price to keep rising

The petrol price will increase by 47 cents a litre from Wednesday, 3 June.

FILE. The petrol price will increase by 47 cents a litre from Wednesday, 3 June. Picture: EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - Economists have urged consumers to tighten their belts, saying they expect the petrol price to keep rising despite the latest increase of 47 cents.

On Friday, the Department of Energy announced motorists will have to dig deeper into their pockets on Wednesday next week, paying between 46 and 49 cents a litre more for diesel.

The department also announced that consumers will fork out between 42 cents more for illuminating paraffin while liquefied petroleum gas will go up by R1 a litre.

Economist Goolam Ballim says while there are factors that will buffer increases, the latest hike is attributed to the steady hike in the crude oil price.

"Many consumers will feel that the reprieve was temporary which means we'll more or less get back to where we were in the middle of last year in terms of the cost of fuel and transportation."

At the same time, economist Dawie Roodt says the average consumer in South Africa is carrying a very heavy burden at the moment.

"Things do not seem to be lifting up soon."

The Department of Energy says the main reason for the fuel price increase is the high crude oil prices which resulted in higher prices (on average) for all the petroleum products in the international markets in May 2015 compared to April 2015.