Reserve Bank of Malawi has left its benchmark lending rate unchanged at 25 percent.
The central bank said s it expected inflation to trend down to around 15 percent by June partly as a result of lower fuel prices after energy regulator slashed by a 10% margin the price of pump petrol in the wake of recent revelations that the commodity has one of the highest prices in non producing African countries..
In a statement posted on its website, the central bank also said growth in the agriculture-driven economy, which was earlier projected at 5.8 percent, may be revised downwards due to the late on-set of rains and flooding.
Malawi Energy Regulatory Authority (MERA) announced that petrol will now be selling at K696.30 from K760.40 while Diesel is at K705.50 per litre from K785.40 Paraffin is now at K609.30 from K678.80.
Minister of Natural Resources, Energy and Mining Atupele Muluzi, explained :” Malawi has the highest fuel prices, but this is due to the logistical challenges that we experience as a landlocked country. We rely on road transport, which unfortunately is not cheap.”
Muluzi said government would bring down the cost of fuel, as it has been negotiating with fuel importers to use the railway line.
Mera acting chief executive officer Elias Hausi backed Muluzi on reasons why Malawi has the high fuel price.
He said, “Although global fuel prices have fallen by about 50 percent, other transportation costs and taxes have not fallen by the same margin.”