Singapore pump prices rise for the fourth time in three weeks

The latest increase was by Caltex on Oct 27. PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - Pump prices are up again - the fourth time in three weeks - in an ascending trend that could see the most popular 95-octane fuel hitting $3 a litre by next year, and the priciest "special" grades crossing $4.

The latest round of increases was started by Caltex on Wednesday (Oct 27), and followed by Sinopec on Thursday.

With its move, Caltex fuels are now on a par with the previous priciest brand, Shell, according to rates posted by Fuel Kaki, a pump price tracker set up by the Consumers Association of Singapore.

A litre of 92-octane is now $2.65 before discount at Caltex, while 95-octane is listed at $2.69, diesel at $2.23 and a special 98-grade at $3.32.

Both 95-octane and diesel match Shell's prices, and are up to 11 cents higher than SPC's.

Sinopec, which, like Shell, does not offer 92 fuel, now lists its 95 and 98 at $2.63 and $3.10 respectively, on a par with Esso.

The latest changes come just days after Esso led the previous increase earlier this week.

After credit card discounts, Caltex and Shell are still the two priciest brands. Caltex's 95 ranges from $2.18 to $2.31 per litre, compared with Shell's range of $2.31 to $2.42, after card discounts.

Esso's 95-octane is between $2.16 and $2.26 while SPC's is a flat $2.19 across five credit cards.

Sinopec, the newest player with just three stations, is offering a discounted rate of $2.06, up from $2.03 previously, although its programme is with only two cards - compared with the five or more the others have.

Pump prices have been rising steadily since mid-2020. In February this year, they rose to their highest since the circuit breaker period from April to June last year. A litre of 95-octane petrol was then listed at $2.19 at all stations except SPC ($2.15).

Since then, the most popular fuel has risen by 50 cents a litre, or an average of six cents per month. If this trend continues, 95-octane might hit $3 before discounts by mid-2022, while the "special" grades could cross $4 a litre by the second half of next year.

Only three brands offer these grades, which are supposedly 98-octanes that are formulated differently. Currently, Caltex's is between $2.72 and $2.79 a litre after credit card discounts while Shell's is between $2.91 and $3.04.

Sinopec, which is said to get its fuel supply from Shell, retails its special grade at $2.52 a litre, again with payments by only two credit cards.

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