LP gas prices poorly monitored, finds Competition Commission

The Competition Commission says the pricing regulations for liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) are poorly monitored by the sector and Energy Department.

The commission released its findings after a three-year investigation into the industry, where 90% of the wholesale market is shared between Afrox, Easigas, Totalgas and Oryx Energies.

The Competition Commission's Thembalethu Sithebe explains that the LPG pricing at a refinery level was not monitored at all, while the pricing at a retail level was poorly monitored by the department.

Our investigation found that there are only nine inspectors that have the job of monitoring the various petroleum products regulated across about 5 000 service stations.

Thembalethu Sithebe, Senior Economist at the Competition Commission

Sithebe says even when the department's inspectors find price corruption, there is very little recourse that can be taken.

The commission has proposed that the National Energy Regulator (Nersa) should take over the monitoring of LPG pricing in the short term.

Meanwhile, LP gas users will pay an extra 96c per kilogram next month, the Department of Energy has confirmed.

Illuminating paraffin users will pay between 34c and 46c per litre while and diesel will increase by between 30c and 32c per liter.

Motorists will pay an extra 49c per litre for all grades of petrol.

Take a listen to Sithebe unpack the commission findings:


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