Kenya is on the brink of a fuel price crisis as Russia, a global diesel and crude oil powerhouse, imposes an export ban.
This move has sent shockwaves through the international market, propelling crude oil prices towards the $100 per barrel mark.
In what appears to be a retaliatory response to Western sanctions against Moscow, Russia has clamped down on exports, causing fuel prices to surge worldwide.
The international press reports a staggering five percent increase in diesel prices, which now stand at $1,010 per tonne, following Moscow’s announcement on Thursday. Meanwhile, Brent crude oil has surged by one percent, stabilising at $94 per barrel after earlier losses.
The duration of Russia’s export restrictions remains uncertain, but if this continues, Kenyans can expect another jolt at the pump during the next price review.
International reports quote Moscow as describing the export ban as “temporary” and a measure aimed at addressing rising energy costs within the country.
In the most recent price adjustment by the Energy and Petroleum Regulatory Authority (EPRA), petrol costs skyrocketed by Ksh16.96 per liter, while diesel witnessed a staggering increase of Ksh21.32 and kerosene surged by Ksh33.1.
In Nairobi, super petrol now commands a retail price of Ksh211.64 per liter, with diesel priced at Ksh200.99, and kerosene at Ksh202.61.
EPRA, in a statement released last Thursday last week, stated, “Taking into account the weighted average cost of imported refined petroleum products, the changes in the maximum allowed petroleum pump prices in Nairobi are as follows: Super petrol increases by Ksh16.96, Diesel increases by Ksh21.32 per litre, and kerosene increases by Ksh33.13 per litre.”
These new prices are expected to trigger a sharp rise in electricity costs as energy bills will rise in tandem with the surging fuel prices. This, in turn, will impact the fuel cost charge, which constitutes a significant portion of electricity billing.
Russia has also curtailed crude oil exports through a deal with Saudi Arabia and the OPEC+ group, leading to a whopping 30 percent surge in global oil prices since June.