Filling up gas.
(photo credit: INGIMAGE / ASAP)
As the New Year began at midnight on Wednesday, fuel prices hit their lowest level since January 2009.
As of January 1, the maximum price of unleaded 95 octane at a self-service pump – including VAT – will not exceed NIS 6.27 per liter, down 63 agorot, or 9.13 percent, from December, the National Infrastructure, Energy and Water Ministry said. The full service surcharge will be unchanged at 19 agorot per liter.
In Eilat, where fuel is sold without VAT, the maximum price per liter of unleaded 95 octane at a self-service pump will be NIS 5.32 per liter, dropping 53 agorot, or 9.06 percent, from the previous month. The full service surcharge in Eilat will be 16 agorot per liter, likewise unchanged, the ministry said.
A graph provided by the Energy Ministry of fuel prices from January 2009 – when they were last at this level – through today indicates a gradual, slight rise in prices for the first year. Between January 2010 and January 2011, there was a sharp rise. Fuel prices hit a peak in early 2012, with a gradual drop – interrupted by intermittent spikes – happening through January 2014. Fuel prices consistently dropped throughout 2014, the ministry graph showed.
The Energy Ministry’s decision to continue to lower fuel prices comes at a time when global oil prices are experiencing a dramatic fall.
On Wednesday, global oil prices dropped toward $56 per barrel and were approaching their biggest annual decline since 2008, Reuters reported.
The sharp drop has occurred due to pressure from a weakened demand and excessive supply. The United States shale production boom has prompted the decrease in demand for oil imports, while OPEC’s refusal to cut down its output has led to an over-abundance in supply, the Reuters report said.