New prices for petroleum products have been released by the Oil Marketing Companies with effect from today. A gallon of petrol will now sell at ¢38,850; gas oil ¢34,712 from the present ¢32,000; and kerosene ¢28,899 from ¢24,500. Premix fuel which used to sell at ¢21,000 will now sell at ¢26,643. Sources close to the companies disclosed this to the Times yesterday.
The source said the prices were arrived at following margins that were determined by the National Petroleum Authority. This is the first time that oil companies are fixing their own prices which forms part of the gradual deregulation of the petroleum industry. This means that the price of a product can be slightly lower but will not exceed the prices fixed and this is at the discretion of the individual oil marketing companies, the source said.
For close to a month, the price of crude oil has gone past the 70 dollar mark resulting in a debt of ¢300billion owed by government to the oil companies. It is believed that the current prices were fixed to reflect the price of movement on the world market.