Minister of Energy, Jeff Radebe, has made a desperate plea to the business sector to hold back on increasing the prices of goods following the record-high fuel price hike that shocked motorists across South Africa on Wednesday.
He recommended this on behalf of consumers who are struggling to cope with the rising cost of living.
“You would recall that in the month of September, we intervened in order to alleviate the fuel price increase, where the price of petrol did not go up,” Radebe said on Wednesday. “We want to appeal to the private sector to show some generosity by not passing on the cost to consumers because we know the price of bread and petrol has a devastating impact, especially on vulnerable members of the South African society. This is our appeal.”
On Monday, the Department of Energy announced a petrol price increase of 99c per litre for 93 Octane and 95 Octane increased by R1.
In September, national government intervened to stop a fuel price hike, but maintained that it cannot step in to prevent a second hike.
Radebe said government finds the continuing fuel price hikes “troubling” and this has had a marked effect on the already high cost of living, and conducting business. The increasing price of fuel has caused a ripple effect on the cost of goods, services and transportation.
He added that this puts enormous pressure on households, farmers, investors, businesses and the delivery of services.
“We would like to encourage all our motorists to be very circumspect when they plan their trips to moderate their driving habits so that they can save fuel,” Radebe said. “These are difficult times and as President Cyril Ramaphosa has highlighted, we need to stimulate the economy through this recovery.”