Good fuel price news expected for July

Unaudited data from the Central Energy Fund (CEF) is indicating decreases to fuel prices – particularly significant drops to petrol prices – for July which, says the Automobile Association (AA), will bring much needed relief to embattled consumers.

The Association says all fuel prices are anticipated to fall when the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy (DMRE) officially adjusts prices for July next week.

A decrease to fuel prices in July will mark the first time this year that prices have fallen in two consecutive months.

According to the latest unaudited data from the CEF, ULP93 and ULP95 are expected to drop by around R1/litre, while diesel and illuminating paraffin prices are likely to drop by around 30cents/l and 25c/l respectively.

“A second consecutive drop in fuel prices is good news for consumers, motorists, and the economy. Lower fuel prices will especially benefit South Africans with vehicles who will save a little on their monthly transport budgets. Consumers generally will also benefit as input costs won’t be negatively impacted and prices at the till are, therefore, unlikely to increase,” the AA notes.

While the Rand has performed stronger against the US Dollar in recent weeks, its impact on the decreases is minimal in the context of the bigger picture which the CEF data is indicating is being driven almost entirely by movements in international product pricing.

The AA says if the expected decreases are realised, fuel pricing will be pushed back in line with pricing last seen in December 2023 when a litre of ULP95, for instance, cost R23.25 inland.

The AA says despite the expected decreases, motorists are advised to keep their vehicles in good mechanical condition, and their tyres inflated to manufacturer’s specifications, to ensure optimal fuel usage. Minimising trips where possible, using air conditioners sparingly, and not overloading the vehicle are other measures owners can take to optimise fuel consumption.

“Although we are expecting fuel to be cheaper in July, we remain concerned about the overall soaring prices which impact all consumers. A sustainable solution to mitigating rising fuel costs is still necessary and until that solution is found, citizens will be at the mercy of fuel price hikes. As the country awaits finalisation of the new Cabinet, we implore the new administration to prioritise finding sustainable solutions to rising fuel costs by conducting a long overdue and transparent review of the fuel pricing structure,” the AA concludes.

The adjusted fuel price for July comes into effect next Wednesday, 3 July.