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French fuel prices soar almost to levels that sparked 'yellow vest' protest

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French fuel prices soar almost to levels that sparked 'yellow vest' protest
A surge in fuel prices sparked the 'yellow vest' movement. Photo; AFP
09:39 CEST+02:00
Petrol and diesel prices have soared since the start of the year and are now almost back at the levels which sparked the beginning of the 'yellow vest' movement.

With the yellow vests still demonstrating every weekend, the government will be watching warily to see if the higher fuel prices give new momentum to the protestors.

Standard lead-free petrol - SP 95 as it is called in France - was being sold at an average price of €1.58 at service stations across the country in late April, with diesel going for €1.48.

Diesel has risen by 17 centimes since the start of the year, with petrol going up by 10 centimes, with rising oil prices being blamed for the hikes.

Which means that petrol has not been this expensive since April 2013.

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Diesel is meanwhile nearing the historic high it reached in October 2018, when diesel prices overtook petrol prices in one-fifth of gas stations nationwide for the first time.

In a country where 80 percent of cars runs on diesel, that translated into a lot of unhappy drivers.

Motorists were further enraged when the government announced that it planned to slap an ecology tax on fuel intended to guide consumer behaviour towards cleaner options.

The yellow vest movement was born and its supporters have taken to the streets every weekend since last November, despite the government backing down on imposing the new tax.

It has since spread from a protest about fuel price rises to a broader movement about social inequality.

It has yet to be seen if the currently high fuel prices will galvanise it, and reverse the downward trend in the number of people turning out for its marches every weekend in cities across France.

 
 
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Boggy - 06 May 2019 11:03
I was under the impression that the price of crude had gone down to $60 a barrel. Whilst I realise that the price of fuel hitting the forecourts now would have been paid for at a slightly higher price, in the next few weeks it should go down.
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