Questions Raised as Kenyans Identify Flaws in EPRA Fuel Calculations

Kenyans have questioned figures used by the Energy Petroleum and Regulatory Authority (EPRA) to calculate the December – January 2024 pump prices after they contradicted those of the Central Bank of Kenya.

In the press release issued on Thursday, EPRA detailed global murban crude oil prices and the exchange rate that was used in the calculation of the latest pump prices.

However, hours after the release, Kenyans noted that the exchange rate used by EPRA was higher than the exchange rate issued by the CBK

According to CBK, the dollar in November traded at an average of Ksh153. However, EPRA detailed that the dollar traded at Ksh157.52.

Matatus at traffic snarl-up along Waiyaki Way in Nairobi

Having a higher exchange rate means that pump prices will automatically be set high, given that petroleum products are imported into the country in dollars.

“Strange for a government entity to use Eastleigh and King’eero rates. The day EPRA and CBK use the same exchange rate is the day you can conclude currency is 100% free float,” economist Mohamed Wehliye stated.

On the other hand, Kenyans also identified discrepancies in the murban oil prices.

According to EPRA, November murban prices were USD93.92 per barrel. However, according to the CBK, murban oil prices in November averaged USD83 per dollar.

In the latest review, petrol prices were decreased by Ksh5, diesel by Ksh2, and kerosene by Ksh4.01.

“If the price of petrol was Ksh217 when the international crude price per barrel was USD120, why should it be Ksh212 when the crude oil prices have fallen to USD 69? If the same parameters used in calculating the prices are not,” a concerned Kenyan opined on X, formerly Twitter.

Additionally, despite the drop in landing costs, EPRA still noted that the government had to subsidise the December-January 2024 pump prices.

“The price of diesel has been cross-subsidized with that of Super Petrol, and in order to further cushion the economy, the Government has opted to stabilise the resultant diesel price.

“The government through the National Treasury has identified resources within the current resource envelope to compensate Oil Marketing Companies,” EPRA detailed in its press release.

Treasury Cabinet Secretary Njunguna Ndungu speaking during a conference with MPs in Nairobi on August 18, 2023.



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