Massive petrol and diesel price drops to kick off 2023

South African motorists will be greeted with big price drops at the pumps in early 2023.

The Department of Mineral Resources and Energy has published the country’s official fuel prices for January 2023, showing substantial declines in petrol and diesel prices.

Both the retail prices of 93 and 95 unleaded petrol will decline by R2.06 per litre from Wednesday, 4 January 2023.

That means a litre of 95 unleaded petrol will cost R21.40 inland and R20.75 on the coast.

Wholesale diesel prices will see an even more significant decline, with 50ppm reducing by around R2.81 and 500ppm by about R2.69.

Illuminating paraffin’s wholesale price is also set to drop by R1.93 per litre.

The fuel price adjustments for January 2023 are as follows:

  • 93/95 unleaded petrol — R2.06 decrease
  • 500ppm diesel — R2.69 decrease
  • 50ppm diesel — R2.81 decrease
  • Illuminating paraffin — R1.93 decrease

The department’s Central Energy Fund (CEF) explained the reductions were driven by the average international product prices for these fuel types declining during the period under review.

This contributed a substantial drop of nearly R1.70 per litre in the retail petrol prices, R2.28 in the wholesale 500ppm diesel price, and R2.40 in the wholesale 50ppm diesel price.

In addition, the rand appreciated slightly against the US dollar, meaning it cost less to buy fuel than in the previous month.

“The average Rand/US Dollar exchange rate for the period 2 December to 28 December 2022 was 17.2815 compared to 17.5338 during the previous period,” the CEF stated.

“This led to a lower contribution to the Basic Fuel Prices on petrol, diesel and illuminating paraffin by 15.27 c/l,18.81 c/l and 19.20 c/l respectively.”

Furthermore, the cumulative slate balances for petrol and diesel at the end of November 2022 showed a negative balance of R7.046 billion.

Accordingly, a reduced slate levy of 61.38 c/l will be implemented in the pricing structures of petrol and diesel from 4 January 2023.

That will be 21.90 c/l less than in December 2022, helping cut petrol and diesel prices further.

The table below compares the inland and coastal retail prices of unleaded 93 and 95 between December 2022 and January 2023.

Fuel price changes
December 2022 January 2023
93 Unleaded R23.16 R21.10
95 Unleaded R23.46 R21.40
93 Unleaded R22.51 R20.45
95 Unleaded R22.81 R20.75

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Massive petrol and diesel price drops to kick off 2023