Three Gulf states raise gasoline prices

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Saudi Gazette report

RIYADH
- The United Arab Emirates, Qatar and Oman have increased gasoline and diesel prices for the month of October.

The UAE and Qatar raised the prices of all kinds of gasoline and diesel prices compared to the previous month while Oman hiked the price of premium gasoline and diesel but maintained the same price of regular gasoline at the level of last month as it was the ceiling set by the Omani Cabinet.

It is noteworthy that the current price of fuel in Saudi Arabia is the lowest among all Gulf countries, as ordinary benzene is being sold in the Kingdom at less than half the price compared to the UAE, Qatar and Oman.

Regarding the October 2017 prices, the UAE maintained the highest price of gasoline in the Gulf countries, followed by Oman, Qatar, Bahrain, Kuwait and Saudi Arabia, which comes in the bottom with the lowest price.

The UAE Ministry of Energy announced last Thursday that fuel prices in the country will increase in October. In a statement, the ministry said the per-liter prices are Super 98 at Dh2.12 from Dh2.02 (up 4.95 percent); Special 95 at Dh2.01 from Dh1.90 (up 5.79 percent); and E Plus-91 for Dh1.94 from Dh1.83 (up 6.01 percent). Diesel price has been fixed at Dh2.10 per liter for October, increased from Dh2 per liter in September. Fuel prices are linked to international crude oil prices.

The State-owned Qatar Petroleum has decided to raise fuel prices in October; Qatar news agency (QNA) reported Thursday. Starting from Oct. 1, the petrol prices will increase from 1.6 riyals ($0.43) a liter to 1.7 riyals, while diesel will cost 1.55 riyals a liter, up from 1.5 riyals in September, QNA said. Fuel prices in Qatar were allowed to fluctuate from May 1 last year in response to the changes in the global market.

Oman is currently working on rolling out a fuel subsidy scheme for lower-income workers in the Sultanate. Since January 2017, the price of M91 fuel has risen by 15 baisas per liter. M91 fuel costs 171 baisas a liter in January, before jumping to 186 baisas in February. In keeping with the fluctuations in the global oil market, June saw M91 prices in Oman return to 180 baisas. M91 costs returned to 186 baisas in September. M95 prices have also changed accordingly, having cost 186 baisas in January, before jumping by 10 baisas in February. In August prices stayed at 186 baisas mark, before stopping at 196 baisas for September.

Saudi Arabia is expected to make adjustments to the prices of energy, including that of fuel, during the coming period without officially specifying a date to start the application or the value of price increase, according to Sabq online newspaper.

The Kingdom’s move comes as part of the reform of the energy sector, which is an essential component of the ambitious National Transformation Program launched last year, which limits reliance on oil revenues and diversifies its economic resources.

The Kingdom announced earlier that it would compensate middle- and low-income citizens for changes in energy prices through the ‘Citizen’s Account’ program, which is expected to be announced soon.


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