THERE will be no change in fuel prices in Namibia for this month, the Ministry of Mines and Energy has announced. Petrol will remain at N$11,35 per litre and diesel at N$11,38.
The decision to keep the prices flat for January follows the monthly review for December, which showed the festive month recorded under-recoveries for both diesel and petrol, which does not warrant a hike yet.
Under-recoveries imply fuel was somewhat expensive to import in December.
The high import costs were, however, kept in check by the Namibia dollar, which appreciated against the US dollar, and averaged at N$14,92 per USD in December from N$15,50 in November.
Andreas Simon, the ministry's spokesperson, says it was therefore unnecessary to increase fuel prices, citing an expected increase in agricultural activities that need to be supported.
"The ploughing season is upon us and diesel is one of the products largely used by the agricultural sector. Moreover, our economy is still limping in the Covid-19 climate, thus it is not the government's intention to place an additional burden on consumers," he says.
South Africa is expected to hike prices tomorrow. Petrol will be up by 40 cents a litre, and diesel 54 cents.
International oil prices show that the average price for refined petrol was US$51,82 a barrel, and US$53,53 for diesel in December. November prices were lower at US$44,15 and US$44,79, respectively.
Oil prices at international level actually increased, and the ministry has announced that the under-recoveries would be funded by the National Energy Fund and were partly offset by the Namibia dollar appreciation.