A New Rise in the Price of Gasoline in Costa Rica

    War in Ukraine shakes fuel prices in Costa Rica due to the global rise in oil prices

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    This past Friday, March 11th, the extraordinary gasoline price study was presented, in compliance with the provisions of the current methodology, which considers the variations in the international reference price of the last 15 days individualized by-product and the exchange rate of the colon with respect to the dollar.

    International fuel prices have increased vertiginously in the last two weeks, due to the fact that the armed conflict in Ukraine generated a wave of economic sanctions against Russia, which, although they excluded oil and natural gas exports, in practice have complicated the supply from Russia and the market fears that it will not be able to cover the portion that Russia represents. This sanction did materialize by the United States last Tuesday the 8th, generating a very strong price scale.

    On the other hand, global demand continues to recover, so the imbalance between supply and demand remains, with an excess of the latter. OPEC + announced that it would increase its quota by 400,000 barrels per day (bp) each month, however, it has not been able to comply due to operational limitations.

    National fuel prices impacted

    Added to this, internally, the exchange rate has increased in the last 15 days, which, together with the behavior of the international oil market, impacts national fuel prices.

    In the midst of this panorama, the extraordinary price adjustment study was presented today to the Public Services Regulatory Authority (ARESEP), and contemplates the updating of the variables for the period between February 24th, 2022 and March 10th, 2022.

    In addition, the behavior of the exchange rate has an impact, which has continued with its upward trend, going from ₡645.71 in February to ₡649.24 in March, with a difference of ₡3.43 per dollar, (exchange rate set by the Central Bank for the non-banking public sector). The increase per liter is ₡87 in Super Gasoline, in Plus 91 it is ₡85 and in Diesel 50, it is ₡121.

    International prices on the rise

    Gasoline and diesel prices show a strong rise as a reaction to the rise in prices of marker crudes (Brent and WTI) in international markets since the beginning of the year, but they accelerate from February 24 when the invasion of Ukraine. The behavior of the exchange rate returns to the rise with ₡3.43/USD, which also impacts consumers, although to a lesser extent, when multiplied by the reference price.

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