Only a month after fuel prices were increased, the Ministry of Trade and Industry yesterday announced new prices, representing an increment of 0.8 and 1.4 percent on petrol and diesel respectively.
In a statement, the Ministry announced that retail prices on petrol have increased from Rwf944 per liter to Rwf952, while diesel increased from Rwf933 to Rwf946 per liter.
The rise of the prices of petroleum products have been attributed to the trend of the international oil prices, which according to the ministry, are governed by rules of supply and demand.
The ministry maintains that prices have been rising sharply since November 1, 2010, when a barrel was at around $85 and now trading about $91.67. The latest figures for November have accumulated to represent an increase of about 8 percent.
The statement further explains that the high international oil prices are not affecting Rwanda alone, but the whole region due to primarily the weaker US dollar which continues to make the price of oil expensive since oil is priced in US currency.
“If the US dollar loses value relative to other currencies, oil becomes cheaper for other buyers in other currencies, demand rises and so does the oil prices. Our regional neighbors have also experienced increased oil prices in the ranges of 3 percent to 12 percent,” says the statement.
Efforts to contact both the minister and the Permanent Secretary for a comment were futile by press time as they were not picking their phones.