Petrol prices capped for a month

Ljubljana – The prices of the two best-selling petrols, regular and diesel, will be capped for a month starting today. Regular now costs 1,503 per litre, about six cents below the lowest price at the pump on Monday, and diesel is capped at EUR 1,541, roughly 13 cents cheaper.

The price cap was reintroduced by the government on Monday to arrest the surge in petrol prices following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, which led to rising global oil prices.

“The aim is to calm the situation on the motor fuels market,” Economy Minister Zdravko Počivalšek said.

The price was capped based on calculations taking into account the seven-day representative average of prices that the Infrastructure Ministry sends to the European Commission.

The situation will be monitored during the next 30 days and the government will take further action if necessary.

The newspaper Finance assessed the government’s decision will push fuel retailers into the red for at least this week.

Its calculations show that retailers are to lose more than 10 cents per litre of diesel sold and around 5 cents per litre of regular. Other costs included, the loss is even higher.

Since the demand at stations along the Italian border has now increased because the prices are much lower than in Italy, the losses of these stations will be even higher.

Retailers have so far been reserved in their reactions. OMV Slovenija told Finance that premium diesel had been removed because its sale was no longer commercially viable.

Hungary’s MOL said that the prices set by the government were currently below their supply price, so they generated a loss, as not even the operating costs were being covered, Finance’s web portal reported.

It added that, given the growing interest of foreign drivers refuelling their tanks in Slovenia, both drivers in transit and drivers residing near the border with Slovenia, disruptions in the supply of service stations were not excluded.

Petrol said that it would strive to secure stable supply, adding that delays in the supply chain had been noticed, while this should not be a problem as the company had all planned deliveries of petroleum products confirmed.

Meanwhile, hauliers are happy with the capped prices, as fuel costs had accounted for a record 30% of all their costs after fuel prices went up by almost a third since the start of the year, according to Robert Sever from the Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GZS). Now they are down to 15%, he told the STA.

Finance has also calculated the effects of the government’s decision on state revenue from excise duties on fuel. The state is to receive one cent fewer per litre of petrol, which is still one cent more than two weeks ago. For diesel the drop is two cents per litre, which is still one cent more than two weeks ago.