The Malawi Energy Regulatory Authority has upped fuel prices; petrol at 20.87% increment, Diesel at 24.31 and Kerosene at a whopping 38.83%. The Authority attributed the hike to the movement of the FOB prices and exchange rate of the Malawi Kwacha to the United States Dollar as well as changes in local factors that determine the maximum pump prices.
“It was noted that the landed costs of petrol, diesel and paraffin increased by 65.91%, 42.39% and 62.32%, respectively. According to the Automatic Pricing Mechanism (APM) all the three products qualified for an upward price adjustment since the changes in their landed costs were beyond the ±5% trigger limit.” says s press release by Mera. True enough, global fuel prices have been on an upward spiral as well; as of yesterday, Brent crude was at $51 per barrel. Five months ago it was $10 lower. On 30 June it was at $41 per barrel. In between the months, the prices were constantly rising and falling.
In the country, observers have pointed that the lack of a Mera Board has led to a hasty and pricey fuel hike. On the other hand, the hike arrives amidst an economy under the grip of the coronavirus pandemic, as jobs have been cut, salaries halved and some businesses closed. The people await as the transport sector is yet to react to the fuel price hike, as other sectors may also raise their product’s prices in line with the same.