Saudi Arabia

Domestic Petrol Prices May Rise 80%

Saudi Arabia is considering raising domestic gasoline and jet fuel by around 80% this year, Bloomberg reported.

The government is planning to raise prices to be roughly in line with varying international prices, Bloomberg reported, saying the decision could take effect as early as November.

At current prices, this could result in an increase of 80% for octane-91 grade petrol, from 0.75 riyals per liter to 1.35 riyals per liter and 95-grade petrol, from 0.90 riyals per liter to 1.62 riyals per liter.

Bloomberg said the government is planning to delay increases in other energy prices until 2018.

Saudi Arabia is the world’s biggest oil exporter but has been forced to diversify its economy away from oil, as global prices have fallen and oil’s long-term future looks uncertain.

The drop in prices caused the country to announce public spending cuts and rises in fuel and energy taxes in 2015.

According to Bloomberg, the government was planning to increase other fuel prices gradually between 2018 and 2021, but that petrol and jet fuel would only be subject to a one-time raise before the end of this year.

Since diesel and heavy fuel oil are used to generate power and for industrial production, the government may cap increases in these fuels.

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