Low-income households have been hit the hardest by the latest fuel pump pricing guide released yesterday, with a litre of kerosene going up by Sh5.05.
The upward adjustment in pricing will see kerosene, which is largely used by the urban poor and rural households for cooking and lighting, retail at Sh71.23 per litre in Nairobi for the next one month.
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It is the highest retail price for the fuel in close to three years, with such prices last seen towards the end of 2014 when it retailed at Sh72 in December of that year. A litre of kerosene was being sold at Sh64.36 in October. The Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) in its monthly retail price capping guide also increased the pump prices of super petrol and diesel.
The cost of super petrol has risen by Sh1.03 per litre, while that of diesel has gone up by Sh3.70. This means diesel will retail at Sh92.41 per litre for the next one month.
The sharp rise in pump prices is expected to further strain the economy, which is already reeling from a prolonged electioneering period, with diesel being the main energy source across industries, ranging from transport to manufacturing. A litre of super petrol in Nairobi will now retail at Sh102.7, up from Sh98.3 in October.
ERC attributed the rise in the retail prices to higher costs of oil in the international markets, which have enjoyed relatively low prices but have in the recent past edged up.