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Fuel Prices Go Up   
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Prices of petroleum products have shot up again by close to 15 per cent, checks by the Daily Graphic in Accra have revealed.

Although no official statement has been issued by the National Petroleum Authority (NPA) or the Bulk Oil Distribution Companies (BDCs) concerning the price hikes, checks indicated that oil marketing companies (OMCs) had increased fuel prices by close to 15 per cent.

Prices of petroleum products had gone up by 13 per cent two months earlier, and just last two weeks they went up by four per cent, precipitating an increase in transport fares last week.

Players in the industry have attributed the hikes to the continued depreciation of the cedi.

Checks by the Daily Graphic yesterday indicated that changes in fuel prices, which took effect from yesterday, varied from filling station to filling station, with marginal differences in the prices.

New prices at fuel stations
At the Total Fuel Station at the Kwame Nkrumah Circle, petrol, which was previously sold at GHc3.474 per litter, is now sold at GHc3.979.

A fuel attendant, Mr John Yeboah, told the Daily Graphic that the price had been increased by 15 per cent, adding that the actual price of petrol per gallon was GH¢17.90 but it had been rounded up to GH¢18.

Meanwhile, at the GOIL Fuel Station on the Osu Oxford Street, fuel prices, compared with what pertained at the other stations, were moderate.
Petrol price per litre was GH¢3.79, while a litre of diesel was sold at GH¢3.57.

The Supervisor at the station, Mr Joseph Beenyi, told the Daily Graphic that the station made a lot of sales on Tuesday because people heard of the possible increment and decided to fill their tanks.

According to him, when fuel prices were increased a fortnight ago, the station maintained its old prices.
At the Shell Fuel Station also on the Osu Oxford Street, the price of petrol was increased from GH¢3.47 to GH¢3.97.

Diesel was also selling at GH¢3.74, from the previous GH¢3.37 per litre.

According to the OMCs, they needed more cedis to buy the same amount of products from the market, hence the need to adjust prices.

“Prices may be higher”
Speaking on an Accra radio station, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Ghana Chamber of Bulk Oil Distributors (CBOD), Mr Senyo Hosi, explained that although “the world market prices have not changed too materially, everything has been the exchange rate”.

“The other thing is that in the last review by the NPA, prices had to go up by about 17 per cent, but government let it go up by just four per cent because there was a policy intervention decision to have the government bear about 13 per cent of that cost and that also was factored into this increment,” he added.

He indicated that the upward adjustment of 15 per cent could even be more, saying, “Barring any particular policy decision as far as subsidies are concerned, prices are supposed to go up. It may be probably a little higher than 15 per cent. And that is a function of the regular pricing structure,” he said.

Drivers react
Reacting to the increment in fuel prices, some commercial drivers expressed disappointment at the decision of the government to deregulate the sector, necessitating the regular adjustment in prices.

While some called for a demonstration against the government over the continued increment, others blamed the government for the depreciation of the cedi which was the cause of the fuel hikes.

“To be frank, we are tired and getting frustrated by the actions of this government. Now nothing seems to be working and they continue to increase fuel prices. What do they expect from us?” Mr Emmanuel Donkor, a motorist, asked.

A taxi driver, Mr Stephen Effun, said the high fuel prices detered commuters from patronising taxi services and it made business very slow.

“I wish all commercial drivers would come together and stage a demonstration to express our sentiments,” he said.
Source: Daily Graphic

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