The Energy Regulation Board (ERB) has resolved to maintain the current fuel pump prices despite the depreciation of the kwacha.

In a statement, the ERB maintained retail prices for Petrol at K13.75 per litre, diesel at K12.01, low sulphur gas at K14.30 and kerosene at K8.85 per litre.

“In line with government policy to review fuel prices every sixty days, the Energy Regulation Board (ERB) has completed the process and made a determination. This follows the importation by government of 104,100 metric tonnes of petroleum feedstock at a cost of US$74.73 million and finished petroleum products (38,157 cubic meters of petrol, 70,588 cubic meters of diesel) at a cost of US$92.90 million,” read the statement in part.

“Consistent with the principal of cost recovery, the amount on the procurement of both the feedstock and finished petroleum products must be recovered through appropriate price revisions. Notably, the last price reviews were on 12th February 2018, when there was an upward adjustment; and on 9th April 2018, when the price remained unchanged because the resultant changes were below the ERB set threshold of 2.5 per cent.”

The Board stated that it was applying caution in its consideration of fuel price review determinants.

“Clearly, since the last price review, the two fundamentals have been volatile where the international oil prices have been rising, while the kwacha has been unstable and continues to fluctuate. Going by the pattern of the two fundamentals that determine fuel pricing, namely the rise in oil prices and a seemingly weakened kwacha, the expectation is that there would be an upward increase in the pump prices,” stated the Board.

“However, any price adjustment under such conditions of volatility and unpredictability must be approached with caution. Therefore, based on the forgoing, the ERB has determine that the current petroleum feedstock importation prices must remain the same.”