FUEL prices have gone down in Zimbabwe following a decrease in oil prices on the international market, the Zimbabwe Energy Regulatory Authority (Zera) has announced.
Zera Chief Executive Officer Engineer Gloria Magombo said on Thursday that fuel dealers and suppliers throughout the country have already started selling the commodity at reduced prices following the adjustment of oil prices.
In an interview, Eng Magombo said Zera expected all fuel dealers to have reduced the fuel price per litre by now.
A survey at most service stations showed that fuel prices had been reduced.
Eng Magombo said Zeraq would be monitoring all fuel dealers to ensure that they comply with the new fuel price regime.
Fuel dealers, Eng Magombo said, are guided by statutory instruments and price formulas in their pricing of fuel.
“Fuel prices have gone down following the decrease in oil prices on the international market,” she said.
“In January the lowest price was $50 per barrel but from April to June it went up to $60 a barrel. The price has now gone down to an average price of $56 per barrel, hence the fall in prices. Prices change and we continuously monitor all fuel dealers since we are the regulator.
“We ask them to submit their returns. Zera is aware of the maximum price that dealers should charge customers.
“Fuel prices in the country are driven by international prices. If internationally the price increases it means we also increase and vice-versa.”
Eng Magombo urged motorists to look for fuel dealers selling at the lowest price.
“As a regulator we urge consumers to look for dealers that charge lower prices,” she said. “We also continuously check the quality of fuel. If consumers are not satisfied with the quality of fuel they have purchased they can contact us and we rush to the company to test for quality.”
Service stations in Bulawayo started reducing fuel prices on Tuesday.
Trek Petroleum general manager Mr Onias Sanangura said the oil price reduction on the international market was the reason for the slashing of fuel prices.
Mr Sanangura said petrol blend price at their Bulawayo branch situated along Main Street used to cost $1,42 per litre, but has now been reduced to $1,34 a litre.
“Diesel was $1,24 a litre and has been reduced to $1,17,” he said.
He said at the Trek Petroleum Mpopoma Suburb branch, petrol blend was reduced to $1,22.
Mr Sanangura said Trek Petroleum was also offering a special discount of two cents for every litre purchased for public transport operators who buy over 200 litres of fuel.
Another fuel dealer, Viva Petroleum, reduced their petrol blend from $1.42 a litre to $1,37, while Redan Petroleum reduced from $1,43 to $1,40 a litre.
Meanwhile, commuters are calling for the reduction of commuter omnibus and taxi fares, arguing that transport operators now have no reason to charge them high fares.
“We should now be paying R4 for a single trip to the city centre. We also expect prices of goods to go down following this development,” said Michael Nkomo of Pumula East.
In January this year, Government ordered all fuel dealers to reduce fuel prices by at least 20 cents following a massive 60 percent drop in prices of oil on the international market.