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ECONOMY | 12-05-2018 13:12

Oil companies agree to Aranguren’s two-month fuel price freeze

The agreement will serve to “soften the effects of local petrol price increases and contribute to the short-term stabilisation of price of the economy”, an Energy Ministry statement said.

YPF, Pan American Energy and Shell have agreed to a two-month price freeze on consumer fuel prices on condition that they can “compensate” for their costs in the second half of the year. Energy Minister Juan José Aranguren met with oil bosses on Monday to discuss the proposal.

International oil prices are at a five-year high, with Argentine consumers particularly vulnerable given the recent spike in the value of the dollar against the peso. The agreement will serve to “soften the effects of local petrol price increases and contribute to the short-term stabilisation of price of the economy”, an Energy Ministry statement said.

Oil companies currently want to see a a six to 10-percent “recomposition” in prices, in line with changing local and international economic scenarios.

The country’s main consumer petrol providers will be able to “compensate for the differences in accumulated costs in this period for a period of six months from July 1, 2018 onwards”, the statement reads.

REPRIEVE ON PUBLIC TRANSPORT

Subte underground users were also gifted some reprieve from rising prices this week.

A City court on Tuesday agreed to temporarily block an increase in the cost of a standard fare on Buenos Aires’ underground transport system known as the subte.

The standard fare was set to rise Tuesday from 7.50 pesos to 11 pesos (US$ 0.53c).

Responding to an injunction request lodged by City legislators Myriam Bregman and Patricio del Corro (Leftist Front), Judge Patricia López Vergara requested that City Hall provide its reasoning for allowing the subte operator SBASE to increase fares.

SBASE, which is owned by City Hall, has requested a 66-percent overall increase to fares. By June, a standard subte fare should cost 12.50 pesos.

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