Tanzania's oil import bill down by 20%

Tanzania's oil import bill has gone down by 20 per cent owing to global increase in oil production on year-to-year ending last December.

The oil bill, according to Bank of Tanzania (BoT), went down from 990.8 million US dollars of December 2013 to 792.5 million US dollars of December 2014.

Though the central bank did not show the quantity imported, but attributed the drop to oil price at the world market that plunged in recent months following increased production.

“During the period under review, average prices of oil went down owing to increased production by OPEC and non OPEC countries,” BoT said in Economic Bulletin for the quarter ending December, 2014.

The report shows that among non OPEC countries that increased production is the United States, while OPEC member included Libya and Iraq.

The BoT also said the price drop was coupled with weak demand in Europe and Asia. On the other hand in Zanzibar, the oil import bill ballooned by almost 40 per cent on year-to-year to 16.3 million US dollars at the end of last December.

It also rose when measured from September 2014 to December 2014 by 3.8 per cent to 16.3 million US dollars. The central bank gave no reason.

The price for crude plunged in the world market from 100 US dollar per barrel last July to below 50 US dollars in February pushing down petroleum product prices as well.

The oil prices went down to six-year lows to see a litre of petrol selling petrol for between 1,652/- and 1,895/- in Dar es Salaam and Kigoma respectively.

Energy and Water Utilities Regulatory Authority (Ewura) said pump prices for petrol, diesel and kerosene have decreased by 116/- per litre or 6.57 per cent, 145/- per litre or 8.49 per cent and 134/- per litre or 8.08 per cent respectively.

It noted that on average, cost insurance and freight (CIF) costs constitute about 60 per cent of the local market pump prices, hence the fall in the world market prices cannot result in a one to one drop in the local market prices.
Source: Daily News, reported by Abduel Elinaza, from Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
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