The cost of importing oil into Kenya has grown by nearly five-fold in 19 short months putting oil-dependent markets such as Kenya under pressure.
According to the tracking of Murban crude oil prices, the price of a single barrel of crude has moved from an average of $17.66 (Ksh.1971) in April last year to a high of $84.24 (Ksh.9401) as of Wednesday this week.
The astronomic rise in the import costs is set to exert more pressure on the government to cushion Kenyans against the runaway oil prices.
For instance, the petrol price stabilization mechanism which first took effect in April this year is expected to face an elasticity test in the next few months as global oil prices continue to push up the ceiling.
Even with the cushioning plan in place, Kenyans are already facing the highest fuel costs with a litre of petrol retailing at a premium Ksh.129.72, while diesel and kerosene costs presently average Ksh.110.60 and Ksh.103.54 respectively.
In the aftermath of low global oil prices, Kenyans paid a low Ksh.83.33 for petrol in May last year while diesel and kerosene costs stood at Ksh.78.37 and Ksh.79.77 respectively.