“In a few days petrol and diesel at Polish petrol stations will significantly increase. However, this time it will not be a result of the higher fuel prices in the world. The main culprit is the zloty, which has been clearly weakening in relation to the dollar," writes Marcin Lipka, Conotoxia Senior Analyst.
For a few days, crude oil or fuels have been relatively stable in world markets. Unfortunately, this only applies to their valuation in dollars. However, as the American currency has become 0.15 PLN more expensive to the Polish zloty in just over a week (approximately 4.5%), diesel and unleaded petrol have reached new highs.
Drivers will experience the zloty weakening
In the European wholesale market (Amsterdam-Rotterdam-Antwerp market), which is also a reference point for domestic refineries, one litre of diesel already costs 1.98 PLN. The last time it was so expensive was in November 2014. The basic unleaded petrol, on the other hand, is priced at 1.93 PLN per litre. Besides the episode in July 2015, when short-term supply and demand disorders caused strong price increases, petrol is also the most expensive since the autumn of 2014.
The correctness of the market for US dollar-valued raw materials is that when the US currency gains value, oil is cheaper. This time we have not observed such a process, because the fundamental factors supporting oil prices (geopolitical issues, increase in global demand, supply limitations resulting from Russia's cooperation with OPEC) have a much stronger impact than currency issues. Therefore, this "safety cushion" is currently empty.
As a result, the US dollar strengthening translates into higher fuel prices for consumers who pay in currencies other than the US dollar. The US currency index has gained 2% since mid-April. In addition to the vast majority of currencies, the zloty has weakened and it's under pressure from capital outflows from emerging markets, the MPC's withdrawal from interest rate rises and worse data on foreign trade. Overlapping global and domestic issues make the dollar cost 3.50 PLN, while at the beginning of the second half of April it was 0.15 PLN cheaper.
Rises by a dozen or so Polish groszy
Significant increases in fuel prices are expected in the next few days. In the case of petrol, they will reach about 0.10 PLN. This will cause the average price of the popular "95" to be close to 5 PLN. This also means that at many stations this level, which has not been seen for years, will be exceeded.
Even higher increases may be expected in the case of diesel. In the first few days of May, it could be several groszy more expensive than the average price of this fuel (4.74 PLN) in the weekly European Commission report from April 23rd. It can be expected that Poles will pay about 4.90 PLN on average per litre of diesel and at some petrol stations a price of 4.99 PLN per litre can even be expected.