Oil marketers’ margins cut as regulator keeps pump prices unchanged

Motorists in Kenya will continue paying the same prices for fuel products as it has been for the past one month until May 14 when a review is expected.

This is after the Energy and Petroleum Regulation Authority (EPRA) left fuel cost unchanged in its mid-month price review.

The retention of the current price could be attributable to sustained pressure by the public to the EPRA as the cost of living continues to be unbearable for Kenyans, a cry which caught the attention of State House and the National Intelligence Service (NIS), prompting meetings between the Treasury, the Ministry of Energy and EPRA to discuss the review, The Business Daily reported.

The last minute decision, which kept the prices unchanged, cut the oil suppliers’ margin that has been controlled by the State since 2010, with an offer of about KES1.7 billion in compensations.

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The marketers’ margin for super Petrol has been slashed from KES12.39 per litre to KES7.95 representing a contraction of  KES4.44.

Diesel margin has been lowered by KES2.28 to KES10.08 per litre while that of Kerosene has been reduced to KES8.89 from KES12.36.

“We made a late decision to cut the suppliers’ margin and offer millions of motorists a relief. This was more of a political decision than an economic one because public anger has been mounting,” a Ministry of Energy official, who requested not to be identified given the sensitivity of the matter was quoted by Business Daily.

From the latest review, Super Petrol will continue retailing at KES122.81 per litre and Kerosene at KES97.85 in Nairobi.

In Mombasa Super Petrol buyers will pay KES120.41, Diesel KES105.27 and Kerosene KES95.46 per litre.

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In Kisumu the fuel prices are as follows; Super Petrol KES123.36, KES108.46 for Diesel and KES98.68 for Kerosene.

The energy regulator, however, noted that the imported fuel prices had gone up in the past one month.

“The average landed cost of imported Super Petrol increased by 9.27 per cent from US$449.82 per cubic metre in February 2021 to US$491.50 per cubic metre in March 2021. Diesel increased by 4.77 per cent from US$423.95 per cubic metre to US$444.17 per cubic metre and Kerosene increased by 7.29 per cent from US$393.23 per cubic metre to US$421.90 per cubic mere,” read the statement from EPRA.

Kenyans have in the past one month felt the pain of fuel price increase, which pushed up the cost of living.

In the last fuel price review effected on March 14, Super Petrol prices rose by KES7.63 retailing to KES122.81 per litre while Diesel and Kerosene prices also rose by KES5.75 and KES5.41 per litre respectively.

Earlier Mining and Petroleum Cabinet Secretary John Munyes had issued a warning to Kenyans about the expected fuel price increase in April saying there is very little the ministry can do.

“Kenya charges the highest taxes on fuel regionally. Taxes and levies are the biggest contributors to the prices. As global oil prices escalate we expect the prices in Kenya to increase,” he told the Senate energy committee.

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