Government is implementing a so-called slate levy on petrol from Wednesday of 22 cents a litre amid news that the petrol price will not drop as predicted by the Automobile Association of South Africa (AA).

The Department of Energy says the Slate Account balance for diesel and petrol was negative R2.2 billion and this necessitated the levy.

The slate is the cumulative under-recovery in the petrol price for a given period.

Petrol prices will remain unchanged from midnight on Tuesday – but other fuel prices will change.

Diesel will increase by between 48 and 51 cents a litre. Illuminating paraffin will increase by 28 cents per litre and LP gas by 61 cents.

The department of energy has attributed the latest fuel price adjustments to recent appreciation in the rand against the US dollar and falling brent oil price.

Nedbank’s economist Isaac Matshego says government could have used this opportunity to recover cost used to subsidise rising fuel price in September.

“It’s good news for users of petrol, but for users of diesel is not good. We are seeing an increase of 50 cents/litre. But looking at this number in detail is that government is recouping the subsidy used to keep fuel prices almost flat in September.”