Zimbabwe has raised the price of petrol and diesel by 38% and 20% respectively, the first increase this month, as the country try to respond to rising fuel shortages. Fuel supply shortages have been a regular feature in recent times. However, the situation worsened in the last few weeks with most of the fuel pumps in the capital still dry.
With effect from tomorrow, a fuel pump price of Z$28.96 per litre for petrol and Z$24.93 per litre for diesel will apply. This is an increase from Z$21 for petrol and Z$20.84 for diesel. The last round of fuel price hikes was at the beginning of last month. The Zimbabwe Energy Regulatory Authority said: “operators may however, sell at prices below the cap depending on their trading advantages”.
Long winding queues are visible at most fuel stations while most are completely empty. Frustrated and desperate motorists are spending long hours parked at fuel stations. A Twitter user Wellington raised concern on the availability of fuel. “Inasmuch as we love cheap fuel, we are more worried about availability than price. At this price how are you going to ensure availability of fuel? The ethanol content is also becoming increasingly expensive,” Wellington said.
But, the new petrol price is US$1.16 at interbank rate of 25x and US$0.44 at the prevailing parallel market rate of 65x. Also, using the same rates diesel is U$$0.99 and US$0.38.