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Government suggests you work from home to save amid fuel price hike

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With fuel prices surging and another increase expected next month, government has suggested that people who can work from home do so to save.

Petrol hit R21/l for the first time earlier this month after a R1.46 increase, but there are fears of a much steeper increase that could see it reach about R24/l if the conflict between Russia and Ukraine continues.

Data from the Central Energy Fund (CEF) predicts the price of petrol could increase by more than R2/l next month and diesel by more than R3.

Addressing parliament’s portfolio committee on mineral resources and energy on the impact of increasing fuel prices and possible alternatives or considerations, department of mineral resources and energy deputy director-general Tseliso Maqubela empathised with motorists and commuters.

“The cost of public and private transport has increased and will continue to increase. We are feeling it in our pockets that travelling to work is becoming quite an expense.

“We believe people will have to juggle, because expendable income will be reduced and will have an affect on economic growth, as we won’t be buying the things we would normally have because the money would be spent on fuel.”

The increase was unavoidable and working from home should be considered an option.

“We need to go back and ask whether everyone needs to be driving if they can afford to, and have the tools of the trade, to work from home. These are things that have to be considered because we are in a war situation. Though we are not involved, we are affected,” said Maqubela.

Companies should also consider other measures that save their employees money.

President Cyril Ramaphosa, responding to questions from MPs this week, said rising food and fuel prices were concerning.

Consultations were under way between government, business, labour, communities and traditional leaders.

“We have set up a committee of ministers to look at the impact the conflict is going to have on SA fuel and food prices. All this is being given consideration.”

The sharp increase in the crude oil price has had a ripple effect on food prices.

He assured MPs that “we are using all the levers at our disposal as government to cushion South Africans from the effects of the rising cost of living”.

Source: TimesLIVE

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