Fuel prices in the country are expected to shoot further, for a fourth time in a row, in a review that will be announced later today by the Energy and Petroleum Regulatory Authority (EPRA).
Sources within EPRA intimated to a local daily that the price of a litre of petrol is likely to go up by at least Ksh6, pushing the average price to at least Ksh128.87.
In the April review, the price of a litre of diesel is expected to increase by about Ksh7 and trade at Ksh114.56 from the current Ksh107.66.
Kerosene which is mostly used by rural and informal settlement households for cooking and lighting is likely to sell at over Ksh100 per litre from the current Ksh97.85.
The authority has attributed the sharp increase in fuel prices to the rise in the cost of imported crude oil.
Last month, members of the public and a number of Kenyan leaders criticized the government over the hike in fuel prices. However, despite the pressure from the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) and Central Organization of Trade Unions (COTU) and other organizations that cited the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic on the economy, the authority didn’t revoke the prices.
Whereas the authority has maintained that importation prices affect local selling rates, it emerged that high taxes imposed by the government drive up the country’s fuel prices when compared to neighbouring countries like Uganda and Tanzania.
For instance, the landed cost of a litre of petrol in February was Ksh49.84, Ksh46.82 for diesel and Ksh42.96 for kerosene.
However, EPRA set fuel prices at Ksh122.81, Ksh107.66 and Ksh97.85, respectively, in Nairobi, in the March review.
Kenyans pay a total of nine different taxes and levies on the products.
The taxes include excise duty of Ksh12.95 per litre of petrol and Ksh11.37 on a litre of diesel and kerosene.
Consumers also pay Ksh18 per litre of petrol and diesel as Road Maintenance Levy,Ksh5.40 as Petroleum Development Levy and Ksh0.25 per litre as Petroleum Regulatory Levy.
They also pay Ksh0.95 per litre of petrol as the Railway Development Levy, Ksh18 per litre of kerosene as anti-adulteration levy and Sh0.03 per litre as Merchant Shipping Levy.
Import Declaration Fee takes Ksh1.65 per litre of petrol while Value Added Tax (VAT) is Ksh9.10 for petrol, Ksh7.97 for diesel and Ksh7.25 for kerosene.
This means that consumers are paying more taxes than the actual cost of the fuel when it arrived at Kenya’s port.