Cash-strapped Morocco hikes fuel prices

Reuters, Saturday 2 Jun 2012

Cash-strapped Morocco will raise prices of refined oil products from Saturday as the government seeks to reduce the growing burden of subsidies while facing persistent demands for more welfare spending

The ministry in charge of general affairs and public governance said industrial fuel prices would be raised by 988 dirhams ($108.6) to 4,666 dirhams ($513.2) per tonne, a rise of 27 per cent, according to a statement carried by official media.

The price of unleaded fuel will increase by 2 dirham per litres, or nearly 20 per cent, and those of gasoil will be increased by one dirham, or about 16 per cent, it added.

The announcement marked the sharpest single increase in fuel prices in several years.

The ministry said the move had been motivated by "the high cost of the subsidy and its likely impact on macroeconomic balances".

It said it would "mobilise necessary financing for public investments that will boost growth in the national economy, pending a radical reform of the subsidy system to make it more advantageous to social groups in need".

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